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Old December 18, 2011, 16:58   #51
Mikko Lehtinen
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Originally Posted by Malak Darkhunter View Post
The thing that attracted me the most about moria and angband is the infinite dungeons, and also NWN game has copied that from angband and moria and produced their own game called Infinite Dungeons, There was also a very good game desighner called primogenitor who made games for NWN fans and he was working on a game called NWN Angband, the concept: randomly generated dungeons. So in reality this has been a big "seller" of angband for a long time.
Every roguelike player loves randomly-generated dungeons.

But many people criticize Angband for the fact that you can spend an eternity collecting experience and items on easy dungeon levels, and the game puts no pressure on you. That's what I meant with infinite dungeons.
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Old December 18, 2011, 17:20   #52
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Originally Posted by Mikko Lehtinen View Post
Every roguelike player loves randomly-generated dungeons.

But many people criticize Angband for the fact that you can spend an eternity collecting experience and items on easy dungeon levels, and the game puts no pressure on you. That's what I meant with infinite dungeons.
That kind of seems like a matter of choice for the player, you can always keep going down after you clear a level, if you want to or select the birth option-no stairs back the way you came, or their is an option to play in ironman mode, the game could be difficult if you select the right options, if you want to play that way. for me I like having the option to hang out on easy levels before proceding forward, It is sometimes kind of necessary as the RNG dosen't always give you what you need, and it is a very good choice not to go farther until you have basic resists, Free Action, covered.
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Old December 18, 2011, 17:27   #53
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The big selling points of Angband for me are that there are no fixed dungeon branches to be cleared game after game, and the fact that randomised egos and the option of randarts allow (near) infinite possible combinations of equipment, instead of the "find universally agreed best item for this slot, enchant to fixed maximum of plusses" approach that leads to assembling a very fixed endgame kit.

I've won Nethack and played a bit of Crawl, and both eventually suffer from the fact that certain steps are very repetitive - in Crawl, if you're not a good player (like me) you're clearing the same early branches again and again, in Nethack you're looking for the exact same kit and completing the same required steps every game... It diminishes the replay value a lot when you're playing many games one after the other, particularly at the two extremes of the curve where you're either dying early every time or winning nearly every time and you end up doing the same stuff over and over.

It's a joke, and an out of date one at that, but to me, "Buy lantern, kill Morgoth" is kind of the essence of Angband's appeal. There's no rigid sequence of 'must collect these specific items and do this stuff in this order' steps along the way. You just get down to 99 and then 100 with whatever's the best kit you've managed to pick up on your way down, and the only part that you have to repeat is killing the last two uniques.
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Old December 18, 2011, 17:32   #54
Mikko Lehtinen
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Originally Posted by Malak Darkhunter View Post
That kind of seems like a matter of choice for the player, you can always keep going down after you clear a level, if you want to or select the birth option-no stairs back the way you came, or their is an option to play in ironman mode, the game could be difficult if you select the right options, if you want to play that way. for me I like having the option to hang out on easy levels before proceding forward, It is sometimes kind of necessary as the RNG dosen't always give you what you need, and it is a very good choice not to go farther until you have basic resists, Free Action, covered.
Well I've made my own semi-ironman variant FayAngband that addresses this problem for me.

When I'm playing Vanilla, there's always a tiny voice in my head that says: "This is not a game that I can play with my full ability." It bothers me that if I played this game optimally, it would get boring. I want the game to kick me in the head.

But I've accepted the fact that many Angbanders actually prefer setting their own difficulty level, and this is actually one of the reasons why they are playing Angband and not some other roguelike. So I'm not complaining really, it's just that tastes differ.

A better scoring system (as discussed earlier in this thread) would help a bit.
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Old December 18, 2011, 17:49   #55
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Well I've made my own semi-ironman variant FayAngband that addresses this problem for me.

A better scoring system (as discussed earlier in this thread) would help a bit.
I agree with that completly something that rewards the daring player, and it should reflect that on the ladder as well.
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Old December 18, 2011, 18:15   #56
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Now I am aware that this is a matter of taste, but I felt that Brogue was a bit busy - I like the clean, uncluttered feel of Angband.
I don't know how you call Brogue "busy", unless it just the vibrant shimmering colors.

It's certainly more compact than Angband, it's a tighter dungeon but not much more or less interesting. It has a few more terrain types, a few more than Angband's two. But, way less monsters, less levels, less commands, less to do to get started, less to remember, no speed, no stats, no 100's of armours and weapons and items, no ego, no artifacts, no uniques, and less is more in this case.

Maybe it's just that 99% Angband's complexity is buried in the details, and 90% of Brogue's is right there on the screen for you to see.
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Old December 18, 2011, 18:27   #57
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Just to back up a bit about Mikko's post about realism and the ideal Angband: at least when I talk about realism, I'm trying to guide intuitive gameplay, not include lots of simulationist details. It makes intuitive sense that STR affects how hard you hit things while DEX affects how accurate you are. That kind of thing. To the extent that Angband is unintuitive, we'd better have a good gameplay reason for it. Stuff like abstracting out hitpoints instead of dealing damage to individual limbs and organs Dwarf Fortress-style is a good gameplay reason.

What I'd like to see Angband do more of in the future is encourage the player to take risks. There's little incentive right now to stick it out if things start getting even a little hairy, since you can always find the stuff you need elsewhere and you're not risking anything permanently by leaving. Preserve mode is an example, though perhaps a heavy-handed one.

My personal roguelike design document which I have lurking in the back of my head has the risk and the reward of the dungeon scale up based on how long you spend in the dungeon, not how deep you are; you're an intruder, so as the residents propagate the alarm more dangerous monsters with better gear start showing up to try to eject you. Once you flee back to the surface (or wherever) the alarm dies down again. In the interests of helping players choose their own difficulty level, whistles could be sold to increase your alert level.

However, I don't know that such an approach would necessarily work well with Angband, where a big part of the feel is delving deep into the earth, having most of a mile of solid rock above you by the time you get down to the bottom. Alarms work best with "infiltrating a facility" type of designs, not so much "exploring a massive semi-natural cave system" designs.
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Old December 18, 2011, 18:33   #58
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The magic of Angband and variants is in the seriousness and the scale and the glorious enormity of it all. It's not a game that you pick up and play for a bit before moving on to the next shiny object; it's a game for devotees. It doesn't suit everyone - it's not even close to suiting everyone - but the people it does suit tend to fall deeply and lastingly in love with it.
I agree with this, Angband (at least old vanilla and many variants) is not a good game for many, but great game for a few. It have some fetures, never found in other modern games.
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Old December 18, 2011, 19:17   #59
Mikko Lehtinen
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Just to back up a bit about Mikko's post about realism and the ideal Angband: at least when I talk about realism, I'm trying to guide intuitive gameplay, not include lots of simulationist details. It makes intuitive sense that STR affects how hard you hit things while DEX affects how accurate you are. That kind of thing. To the extent that Angband is unintuitive, we'd better have a good gameplay reason for it. Stuff like abstracting out hitpoints instead of dealing damage to individual limbs and organs Dwarf Fortress-style is a good gameplay reason.
I want simulationism that is at the same time streamlined, easy to understand, and intuitive. And it has to play very fast. Fortunately, what you're creating seems exactly what the doctor ordered.

A system like O-combat is perfect: elegant, functional, but not the simplest possible, with some nice simulationist crunch in it.

I love the elegancy of Ey-combat but it is too bare-bones and abstracted for Angband. It feels a like a system from a tactical console RPG. The fact that weapons get higher and higher damage dice and more and more exotic sounding names as you go deeper in the dungeons is PURE FUN but it isn't realistic.

And the old Vanilla combat system is simply bad. It's crunchy in all the wrong places, and doesn't feel anything like real combat.

I'd love to see some more magical realism added, too. The elemental system is in the core of Angband, and therefore we should spend some worldbuilding effort on it. Are we calling our spells effects from the Elemental Planes? What is this Nexus thing exactly? Maybe we could browse Rolemaster books for inspiration. It could just be some notes in the help files, or maybe the scientific explanation for the elements could have some real effects in the game.

Oh yes, and a game with clerics and paladins simply has to have gods, somehow, at least in the help files if nowhere else. Their flavour sucks. (I have a nice simple deity mechanic with semi-randomly created gods in the next Fay. It *might* work with the deities of Middle-Earth, too.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
What I'd like to see Angband do more of in the future is encourage the player to take risks. There's little incentive right now to stick it out if things start getting even a little hairy, since you can always find the stuff you need elsewhere and you're not risking anything permanently by leaving. Preserve mode is an example, though perhaps a heavy-handed one.
This is the biggest issue for me, as you've probably noticed.

The Fay stair system is working very well, but unfortunately it needs smaller levels, so maybe it isn't suitable for Vanilla.
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Old December 18, 2011, 19:38   #60
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you're not risking anything permanently by leaving.
This is also true for most other roguelikes which have permanent levels. You can allways return later. What I dont like the most in e.g. Dungeon Crawl, is how limited items are, and how they are independent on depth, so e.g. the only copy of some cool book or the only ring of "type you need" may be located at dlvl 1. This basically means, that obviosly the best way to play is to clean out levels.
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