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Old April 6, 2012, 08:57   #1
Mikko Lehtinen
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Starting from flavour

Hello!

I want to design some new game elements for my Angband variant Halls of Mist, known as FayAngband in the current version. There's some info about my new setting here:
http://www.mikkolehtinen.net/mist/

I want to start the design from strong flavour, and develop game mechanics from there. Maybe someone would like to help me? Or, alternatively, propose your own flavour-first design ideas for the thread! This could be fun.

1) New monster: Skultgard Animator. This magic-user is specialized in animating dead bodies and nonliving material to make zombies, skeletons, and golems. I don't really want to make him a summoner (animation takes time) but he will probably appear with golems, skeletons and zombies. Should he maybe boost the animated corpses in some way, and if so, how? Perhaps he should have telekinesis-like spells, since animation and telekinesis feel like related effects? Feel free to propose anything!

2) Scroll of Reverse Gravity (or maybe monster spell). This has nothing to do with my setting. I really have no idea how to turn this into game mechanics.
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Old April 6, 2012, 14:24   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikko Lehtinen View Post
I want to design some new game elements for my Angband variant Halls of Mist, known as FayAngband in the current version. There's some info about my new setting here:
http://www.mikkolehtinen.net/mist/
This looks wonderful. I love your introduction screen - it makes me want to play already. And I think that starting from the theme (which your blog design seems to me to fit in with) is definitely the right plan.

A couple of thoughts:
  • I am imagining the dungeon complex as having a section corresponding to each realm. You could have different generation styles for each realm, with hybrid generation as the realms merged into each other.
  • I think something more complex than the linear Angband dungeon would be appropriate. Do you have any plans along those lines?
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Old April 6, 2012, 15:06   #3
Mikko Lehtinen
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Thanks, Nick!

At the moment all of my monsters originate from one of the realms. Wilderness areas tend to have monsters from Thornwild, and civilized areas monsters from Skultgard. Monsters from Aether and Chaos are placed randomly anywhere on the level but they usually appear in groups of their own kind. (I added a little bit of randomness and mixing monsters from different realms to make challenges less predictable.)

I have considered both of your ideas, and will probably move in that direction in the future. Two of the realms already kind of have their room styles, and it would be technically easy to do what you propose.

In the near future, though, I want to concentrate on making monsters more flavourful. For example, designing the Skultgard Animator is thematically very important since it explains the origin and style of Skultgard undead and golems.

(The predatory vampires of Thornwild are very different from the mindless armies of animated Skultgard undead. I want to add a vampire bear to drive that point home! The Realm of Aether has undead too, ghosts and liches for example.)

The game is actually completely playable and very enjoyable already. Just some bugfixing and balance tweaks, and I'm ready to publish a public beta. There will still be some Tolkienien stuff in it. It will take time to replace all flavour text and artifact/monster names.

Last edited by Mikko Lehtinen; April 6, 2012 at 15:38.
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Old April 6, 2012, 16:43   #4
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I've been thinking a lot about a dungeon without stairs, without the hard breaks between levels. A dungeon that just flowed seamlessly from one danger level to the next, with older areas being wiped away and new areas being created 'on the fly'. The wilderness in Z+ (though static) functioned in this manner and I always liked it despite it being a real killer, since escape from tough enemies is much more difficult. I feel it would be more manageable in the limited access that dungeon environment provides. Don't know if it's right for the variant formerly known as Fay, just throwing it out there.
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Old April 6, 2012, 19:04   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikko Lehtinen View Post
1) New monster: Skultgard Animator. This magic-user is specialized in animating dead bodies and nonliving material to make zombies, skeletons, and golems. I don't really want to make him a summoner (animation takes time) but he will probably appear with golems, skeletons and zombies. Should he maybe boost the animated corpses in some way, and if so, how? Perhaps he should have telekinesis-like spells, since animation and telekinesis feel like related effects? Feel free to propose anything!

2) Scroll of Reverse Gravity (or maybe monster spell). This has nothing to do with my setting. I really have no idea how to turn this into game mechanics.
1) IMO the corpses should be thrown at the player by telekinesis, and then attack him/her. Their speed should be inversely proportional to their mass for realism. This way the bigger (and therefore potentially more lethal) monsters would arrive some turn later, giving a chance to the player to flee.
You don't want a summoner, so, once the escort of the animator is dead (again), it should not rise up for revenge autonomally. But if the player doesn't clean the dungeon from the animator before a large enough number of turns (counting from when he slash the first monster), he would return with a new escort.

2) perhaps the affected monster could be violently launched a good way up (if in the wildrness, or against the ceiling in a dungeon), then receive damage from the falling? this spell could affect a small area
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Old April 7, 2012, 05:14   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mikko Lehtinen View Post
Hello!

I want to design some new game elements for my Angband variant Halls of Mist, known as FayAngband in the current version. There's some info about my new setting here:
http://www.mikkolehtinen.net/mist/

I want to start the design from strong flavour, and develop game mechanics from there. Maybe someone would like to help me? Or, alternatively, propose your own flavour-first design ideas for the thread! This could be fun.
Feral Sidhe ('Sidhe' basically being a fancy Celtic word for 'elf') from the Thornwild maybe. 'h's that use that evasive pack AI, are fast and hit hard but are easily killed. Could have an arrow attack too. Spin-off monsters like Feral Sidhe druids/shamans, chieftans, hunters, etc would be possible too.

Quote:
1) New monster: Skultgard Animator. This magic-user is specialized in animating dead bodies and nonliving material to make zombies, skeletons, and golems. I don't really want to make him a summoner (animation takes time) but he will probably appear with golems, skeletons and zombies. Should he maybe boost the animated corpses in some way, and if so, how? Perhaps he should have telekinesis-like spells, since animation and telekinesis feel like related effects? Feel free to propose anything!
- Maybe acts as a healer. I seem to recall some 'bands had undead creatures being healed by nether attacks, so maybe use something like that. Like the Animator casting a nether ball spell at the player, it would damage @ and also heal any of their undead minions fighting the player. On the other hand I don't know if you want the Animator to have the whole 'nether-blasting necromancer' feel, so you might want to code a new healing effect altogether.

- An aggravate effect is another option.
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Old April 7, 2012, 08:57   #7
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Don't know if it's right for the variant formerly known as Fay, just throwing it out there.
I don't want to throw out the current Fay navigation between dungeon levels. It's one of the best features in my variant! I'd rather like to extend the current system somehow.

I like how the navigation between levels is abstracted away, and your Mapping skill helps you find your way back to the surface. But maybe there could be different paths that you can choose when you descend.

Yesterday I had one idea. What if the game generated procedurally a map kind of like this:
http://grognardia.blogspot.com/2012/...ld-papers.html

For every six dungeon levels or so, you could choose your path. Each path would have a different dungeon theme.
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Old April 7, 2012, 09:06   #8
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Originally Posted by ghengiz View Post
2) perhaps the affected monster could be violently launched a good way up (if in the wildrness, or against the ceiling in a dungeon), then receive damage from the falling? this spell could affect a small area
Something along these lines, yes. How about this:

Scroll of Reverse Gravity. A radius 5 ball, centered on the player, causes everybody falling damage (including the player!). Damage is doubled in rooms, as the ceiling is higher than in corridors. Flying or feather falling protects from damage. If player or monster succeeds in Jumping check, halve the damage (they manage to land on their feet).

Last edited by Mikko Lehtinen; April 7, 2012 at 09:56.
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Old April 7, 2012, 09:27   #9
Mikko Lehtinen
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Originally Posted by ThunderToads View Post
- Maybe acts as a healer. I seem to recall some 'bands had undead creatures being healed by nether attacks, so maybe use something like that. Like the Animator casting a nether ball spell at the player, it would damage @ and also heal any of their undead minions fighting the player. On the other hand I don't know if you want the Animator to have the whole 'nether-blasting necromancer' feel, so you might want to code a new healing effect altogether.
I like healing spells without nether attacks. Haste and Armor spells would be cool, also. If we replace healing with Regeneration, we can handle all three spells in the same way, as temporary buffs that affect animated undead and golems.

What should the area of effect be? Perhaps all animated monsters within 10 squares of the animator receive the buff? The animator should only cast these spells if there is at least one animated monster in range that doesn't have the buff already.

I'd like the Telekinesis monster spell to have nothing to do with animated monsters. Just a special attack spell for the animator. What if it pushed the the player 1d4 squares to a random direction? Hitting walls, furniture or monsters would cause damage. (Also to the monster.) I could give the same spell to poltergeists...

Last edited by Mikko Lehtinen; April 7, 2012 at 09:41.
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Old April 7, 2012, 09:38   #10
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Could I get some opionions on Staff of Earthbinding? All flying monsters in sight, unless they make their saving throw, take heavy falling damage. They temporarily lose flying and become slowed. The staff would have a quite limited number of charges.

I want something against those damned harpies! They are my number one cause of death.
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