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Old August 8, 2011, 13:22   #1
kurie
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[3.3.0] opinions and comments

I have been playing Angband for 16 years now. Other people don't understand it. I have yet to meet someone who has heard of it. But alas, for me, I am hooked. Indeed, when I bought my monster gaming rig, I found myself sitting there playing Angband on it lol.

I greatly appreciate the time and effort the current maintainers put into this game that I love. The very least I can do is offer these humble comments and critisisms.

I find the removal of restore stat potions a hindrance and more than a bit of an annoyance. Being somewhat Monk-ish, it has always bothered me greatly when one of my stats is reduced. I feel the irrational need to have all of the stats a green color, besides which it affects my charachter. You did attempt to compensate the player for this by restoring stats when you advance in charachter level. I don't know that this is adequate when considering the freedom you have removed. Perhaps you could add a store service to the temple, such as seen in NPPAngband. You would not have the additional potions cluttering the dungeon, and the player is still free to choose whether to repair his charachter now or wait for an advance in level.

This is a nice place to segway into a discussion on the new stat potions. Increase a stat, lower a random stat. It reminds me a lot of playing Morraf's World as a kid, and killing Puffballs. Their death produced a similar effect. I personally do not often use them. I may drink one or two to get that extra blow I need - unless it backfires and raises dex but reduces str lol. But typically it's simpler to just squelch them and continue a bit further into the dungeon and harvest stat potions. To encourage the use of the new potions, perhaps you could sink the stat gain potions deeper into the dungeon. I don't know if this really encourages the use of the new potions, however, due to the random nature of the inherent penalty associated with them.

Onto the subject of Smeagol. He seems a bit wan as of late, and slack in the pockets. Too often have I slain him only to find copper coins. He is far too annoying to be worth such paltry rewards. I suppose I could just edit his text file, but I still wanted to include that here.

The inclusion of Nomads tiles is not new to this release, but he deserves recognition. I have never been a tiles player, as I found the tiles wanting. However, the tiles created by Nomad are outstanding. I love the little details, such as the numbers on the spell books indicating their level. The monsters are easily recognizable, but uniques do tend to get lost in a crowd of escorts. This is especially true of the orcs. The spell effects are a far cry from exploding colored stars as well.

You have added the NPP style targeting path, this is a great addition. Also the birth option to have items sell for 0 gold, with increased gold in the dungeon, is a welcome sight. I personally always play with this option on. There is a LOT of cash waiting to be grabbed down in the dungeon now, I have seldom been lacking for gold. And no longer feeling the need to hoard expensive treasures for that trip to town is liberating.

This sort of fits in with ID by use. This is great. And I noticed some items that used to be cursed are no longer. Such as the Ring of Teleportation. It's great to be able to psuedo ID an ego, than just start hacking away with it. Now I can spend more of my % burden on things like armor and not stacks of scrolls etc... Speaking of armor, it's nice to see the AC has been looked at. It's a welcome boost, and not overpowering.

One thing I will take this time to lobby for is the inclusion of the NPP "You see it, it's identified." system. For example - when you go into the temple, all of the things for sale become identified, whereas in 3.3.0 they are labeled unseen. The NPP system has several benefits. It's easy to die in Angband. It is SO nice to pop into all the stores and get the basics identified. The time and money you save is incredible. And it makes the early game more fun. Not only the above, but it makes sense from a logical perspective too.

All in all, great job you developers are doing. Angband is a gem, and it's nice to see people still taking such an interest in it.
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Old August 8, 2011, 13:50   #2
Timo Pietilš
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kurie View Post
I find the removal of restore stat potions a hindrance and more than a bit of an annoyance. Being somewhat Monk-ish, it has always bothered me greatly when one of my stats is reduced. I feel the irrational need to have all of the stats a green color, besides which it affects my charachter. You did attempt to compensate the player for this by restoring stats when you advance in charachter level. I don't know that this is adequate when considering the freedom you have removed.
This is actually closer to original angband than it feels at the first touch. It makes sustains important again. I suggest that small single-stat sustain rings get re-introduced and those that sustain three stays like they were.
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Old August 8, 2011, 14:37   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kurie View Post
One thing I will take this time to lobby for is the inclusion of the NPP "You see it, it's identified." system. For example - when you go into the temple, all of the things for sale become identified, whereas in 3.3.0 they are labeled unseen. The NPP system has several benefits. It's easy to die in Angband. It is SO nice to pop into all the stores and get the basics identified. The time and money you save is incredible. And it makes the early game more fun. Not only the above, but it makes sense from a logical perspective too.

All in all, great job you developers are doing. Angband is a gem, and it's nice to see people still taking such an interest in it.
Thanks for taking the time to write up your feedback. I think if we were going to treat everything in stores as IDd, we might as well get rid of the ID minigame altogether, and make it more of a tactical choice where you have all the info about your items (think Titan Quest etc.). We've tried to make ID interesting without being burdensome, and people tend to think that ID-by-use is a good move in this direction (and there may be more changes to come).

Personally, I quite like spending some of my early cash buying stuff which is cheaper than an ID scroll, even if I don't need it and sell it back. But I guess this could be made smoother by having a store command to pay a small fraction of an item's price to ID it without buying it.

I am generally ambivalent about ID. I think it would be a shame if everything was known instantly (though that doesn't stop TQ from being an awesome game), but it does get a bit tedious carrying loads of scrolls/staves to ID stuff. NPP has a "mass ID" effect which might be useful. Other ideas include giving high-level characters instant pseudo and/or full ID.
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Old August 8, 2011, 15:19   #4
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Originally Posted by Timo Pietilš View Post
This is actually closer to original angband than it feels at the first touch. It makes sustains important again. I suggest that small single-stat sustain rings get re-introduced and those that sustain three stays like they were.
Actually I propose something opposite. Early in the dungeon it's easy to gain levels and stat drainers can be avoided. Presumably, the early sustain rings would exist there, precisely when they're useless.

I would instead add a ring of sustenance that comes up about the same time the amulet of sustenance does.

Lastly the (no-longer-)branding rings are too deep to be useful now. A ring that activates for resist all would be welcome, but I can't ever see myself using one of the current rings.
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Old August 8, 2011, 15:42   #5
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Originally Posted by Magnate View Post
Thanks for taking the time to write up your feedback. I think if we were going to treat everything in stores as IDd, we might as well get rid of the ID minigame altogether, and make it more of a tactical choice where you have all the info about your items (think Titan Quest etc.). We've tried to make ID interesting without being burdensome, and people tend to think that ID-by-use is a good move in this direction (and there may be more changes to come).

Personally, I quite like spending some of my early cash buying stuff which is cheaper than an ID scroll, even if I don't need it and sell it back. But I guess this could be made smoother by having a store command to pay a small fraction of an item's price to ID it without buying it.

I am generally ambivalent about ID. I think it would be a shame if everything was known instantly (though that doesn't stop TQ from being an awesome game), but it does get a bit tedious carrying loads of scrolls/staves to ID stuff. NPP has a "mass ID" effect which might be useful. Other ideas include giving high-level characters instant pseudo and/or full ID.
I like the idea of giving high level charachters full ID. I also really like the idea of mass ID, as long as it's not it's rarity did not impact the usefulness. I approach the whole thing differently than you. I die alot, and find the whole process of re-IDing tedious. Getting some of the most common things out of the way such as !CLW etc... is a time saver to me. I don't believe it would render the entire ID minigame useless. There would still remain a good percentage of mysterious things waiting to be found and identified. I am a big fan of options, perhaps a birth option could be implemented.
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Old August 8, 2011, 16:02   #6
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Regarding stat drains: the new system has done an excellent job of making deep stat drainers scary. I don't think they'd be as scary if you could restore your stats by returning to town -- and in any event, I don't want there to be new mechanisms to encourage returning to town, because that breaks up the dungeon crawling. Much better IMO for players to learn to deal with the temporary difficulties imposed by drained stats (and by aesthetically displeasing status displays).

By the time stat-restore-by-level-up is seriously difficult to achieve, you have reasonable odds of finding a gain-stat potion in the dungeon, which of course restores the stat before increasing it.

I've said for awhile now that the elemental rings, without brands, should simply replace the Ring of Protection. Either they appear at the same depth as the current ring does, but lose their attack activation, or they appear a bit deeper (around 800-1000') as they currently are.
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Old August 8, 2011, 17:18   #7
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Regarding stat draining:

First off, my habit was to recall, buy restore potion if available, if not reset shops by resting on level 1. It is gone now, and that is a good thing.
Secondly, I agree with fizzix: the lack of restore potions doesnt impact the early game, if anything it has become easier to restore now than it was before.
So I dont see me using a single stat sustain item, if it should be reintroduced.
It is when you need 10k s of XP to advance that restoration becomes a problem, and here I disagree with Derakon, you can not rely on stat potions. They appear far too infrequently. Instead, I find myself avoiding alot of monsters now that I used to fight before. It bears reminiscence to the old days of hound-flooded levels.
I think it would be good if there was a bit less draining overall. Something like reducing the chance a given monster uses its drain attack or such.
And yes, sustains are worth alot more now, previous to M. When my current mage who was using an "magi found a "sustenance I didnt hesitate to swap.

On a sidenote: my ironman warrior used a ring of bodykeeping for most of the game, but thats something I might well have used prior to the restore change as well. Strange as it might seem at first glance, I see that change not impacting ironman play much - sustains have always been valued highly there.

Last edited by Estie; August 8, 2011 at 17:19. Reason: edit: ring of bodykeeping of course, not soulkeeping
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Old August 8, 2011, 17:28   #8
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Which monsters do you avoid solely because of their draining attacks? The main ones I can think of are Dreads, which came in significant numbers that I was careful engaging them even before STR was hard to restore (because otherwise I'd be drained for the rest of the level, which wasn't much fun). And of course Time Hounds but again, I avoided those before, too.

I didn't mean to say that stat potions were a reliable way to deal with drained stats. Nor should they be. However, I'd say roughly 1 in 5 to 1 in 2 levels, deep down, has the stat potion you'll need to drain a specific stat. That's not bad; certainly faster than grinding the experience needed to gain a level.
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Old August 8, 2011, 17:45   #9
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One example is Ghost. Its a harmless enough thing that can be 1-shotted, but it being fast, erratic and prone to stay in walls, chances are that it gets the first attack before I can target it. So I take the next staircase when detecting one of those.

There are others I cant recall atm, of course depending on what class I play, what equipment I have at the time etc.

Oh and yes, I can probably let ghost drain me enough to lose level and then drink restore life to get both xp and stats back...but bleh.
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Old August 8, 2011, 19:38   #10
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Actually I propose something opposite. Early in the dungeon it's easy to gain levels and stat drainers can be avoided. Presumably, the early sustain rings would exist there, precisely when they're useless.

I would instead add a ring of sustenance that comes up about the same time the amulet of sustenance does.

Lastly the (no-longer-)branding rings are too deep to be useful now. A ring that activates for resist all would be welcome, but I can't ever see myself using one of the current rings.
Problem with deep rings is that ring slots are really valuable deep down, and using them for sustains probably wont happen. You probably would prefer swap amulet over swap ring. Crowns of Might, Lordliness and Magi are also useful for sustains. Amulet of Wis sustains wisdom, Trickery sustains DEX, Weaponmastery sustains STR and CON, Magi sustains INT.

Deep in dungeon getting necessary sustains is no problem, also detecting drainers is no problem so avoiding them is easy. Early game to stat-gain is the area where you need sustains most (and could use ring).

I agree that "branding"-rings are again junk. How about just plain removing them? There are two types that didn't even exist before they got branding (Acid and Lightning), so removing them all would actually count as removing just two from original set.
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