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Old January 13, 2019, 14:31   #41
Quirk
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So I've discussed this a bit with wobbly already, and won't say much more than: I think the song proficiency on elves is absolutely canon, dwarves and men are rarely seen working magic through song if at all. There is the possibility that it leads to every elf being a singer of some description, but that may be okay, and I do note that not every elf invests in archery at present despite its obvious power.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Infinitum
Speaking of, maybe downgrade the archery affinity to a bow proficiency for the elves (with Falas receiving an archery affinity as well). Elves are plenty strong as is.
This is a perfect and elegant idea. Swap out the archery affinity for song affinity, and sword proficiency for bow proficiency. I very much like this.

With regard to songs being split by race: currently it's been quite hard to balance them without imposing further restrictions, so I'm not sure how I feel about this. It would be somewhat difficult to make it work as you've suggested - Trees couldn't go at 1 elegantly, as many characters wouldn't have the requisite 5 points to get even one light level of benefit, Staying would be monstrously powerful, etc - but splitting songs between races would go some way to resolve the current crush of songs that need the investment to be cheap to be viable (Elbereth, Challenge, Silence, Freedom, Delvings, Thresholds). That said, we then weirdly incentivise the dwarven or human singer, which is dubiously canonical.

With regard to removing Dex/Strength maluses, I think my preference would be to remove a Con point from the Sindar, and a Grace point from the dwarves. Nogrod would then gain back the Grace point to be the same as before, and Belegost would swap the Dex malus for having 0 Grace. This preserves the bruiser nature of Belegost and may even be a small buff. Sindar will lose out some from not having the extra Con, but I think Sindar are currently decently stronger than Naugrim.

I do think it would be interesting to have some skills which were race-dependent, but it's easier said than done. Coming up with one decent skill to fill a slot in a manner which is balanced enough that it gets taken on some builds and not others is hard enough, never mind finding three, and having them all suit neatly into racial stereotypes. Trying to do this for multiple trees or multiple skills in the same tree will get wearing fast. Having a separate tree for them might work but feels like it might prove inelegant.

Last edited by Quirk; January 13, 2019 at 14:39.
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Old January 13, 2019, 15:30   #42
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What I was sketching out last night is a structure that looks roughly like this:
  1. Song of Elbereth / Song of Challenge
  2. Song of Silence / Song of Staunching
  3. Song of Freedom / Song of Thresholds
  4. Song of Delvings / Song of Whetting (prerequisite Challenge)
  5. Song of Trees - (prerequisite Elbereth or Freedom)
  6. Song of Staying - (prerequisite Staunching or Thresholds)
  7. Song of Lorien - (prerequisite Silence)
  8. Song of Mastery - (prerequisite Elbereth or Lorien)
  9. Woven Themes
  10. Grace

Song of Staunching, based on Luthien's song of staunching sung to heal Beren, would shorten bleeding and more importantly greatly speed regeneration.
Song of Whetting I'm currently thinking gives an extra damage side. I don't like the old Sharpness implementation in which each additional Song point gives you 2% of Xd4 more damage against your opponents, it feels clumsy. On the other hand the canonical whetting spell allowed Beleg to sever metal shackles with a sword, which feels like it maxes out at more than just a damage side.

In both cases the scaling with Song is tricky. Songs tend to a linear scaling when for balance purposes this does not always work very well. I have tried to keep this, but in places it can lead to relatively inelegant implementation.

Having Staunching's regeneration scale linearly is problematic: it will do too little early on, and possibly too much late - particularly if Song is scaling a multiplier on the existing regeneration mechanic which also scales with Constitution. Ideally it would do enough early to save a player from death by poison, and still be usable later. I may try something like "Stops all bleeding and regenerates 2 + (Song/6) health per round" (the numbers here will be tweaked after much testing). I think it has to go quite early because it is potentially a useful emergency song that could be grabbed at the point you realise you won't survive the poison you just took.

Whetting scaling to multiple damage sides could easily become very broken, but perhaps something like 1 + (Song/12) damage sides would be plausible. The other mechanic I was debating was it granting the extra damage side to weapons weighing less than the singer's Song score, making it easier to whet a dagger than a greataxe. It might not be broken to have it grant actual sharpness to weapons weighing less than (Song / 5) lbs as daggers and shortswords are very much stealth weapons and the song could be a noisy one; you would need to get to 10 Song to whet a light longsword. This would make shortswords somewhat more viable without backstabs.

Whetting arguably shouldn't work on blunt weapons, particularly if it's granting actual sharpness, but this approach gets us toward the situation where you put aside your warhammer when you have to deal with an armoured opponent, which seems fundamentally wrong - I can't think of a better tool to deal with an enemy made of stone.

I'm not sure how I feel about prerequisites here. Prerequisites block off some builds, and punish skills: weaker higher-tier skills suffer from having a prerequisite, weaker lower-tier skills suffer from not being a prerequisite to a strong higher-tier skill. Delvings is not a prerequisite for anything, which may mean it is still too costly at 4 after the competition has hotted up; it may be better to swap its place with Silence, which will still be viable at 4 because it lives on an all-in Song/stealth build. I don't really want to split Challenge/Elbereth or Freedom/Thresholds because they make nice naturally opposed pairs at the same cost.
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Old January 13, 2019, 19:36   #43
HugoTheGreat2011
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Question about Smithing Enchantment ability: When you pick enchantment, does it apply to just to the chosen prerequisite (e.g. Weaponsmith) or both Armorsmith and Weaponsmith? Imo, it should apply to just the already chosen prerequisite.
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Old January 13, 2019, 19:52   #44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HugoTheGreat2011 View Post
Question about Smithing Enchantment ability: When you pick enchantment, does it apply to just to the chosen prerequisite (e.g. Weaponsmith) or both Armorsmith and Weaponsmith? Imo, it should apply to just the already chosen prerequisite.
It applies to Weaponsmith, Armorsmith and Jeweller - but you can only make enchanted versions of these items if you already could make those items. So if you have Weaponsmith and Armorsmith and pick Enchantment you can make both enchanted weapons and enchanted armour, but you still can't make enchanted jewellery.
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Old January 13, 2019, 20:05   #45
HugoTheGreat2011
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I realized I asked something else than intended: my corrected question - does the enchantment's identification apply only to those items I can make?

On a separate topic - various other things:

Does the Song of Elbereth work if player is blinded?

I noticed these too:
' command (reversed apostrophe) works as another ESC key.
When accessing the abilities via TAB key, TAB can be used to exit it.
When changing options, 't' can be used to toggle yes/no
Left arrow key can be used to exit out of the Smithing menu
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Hugo = usually plays Halo, PosChengband and its Forks, and Sil

My YouTube channel, where I'm known as YggdrasilTid (includes my PosChengband gameplay+music):
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqG...vf4c0P8ipsIeQQ

My most recent good try at PosChengband 7.0.0's nightmare-mode on Angband.live:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwAR0WOphUA

Last edited by HugoTheGreat2011; January 13, 2019 at 20:11.
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Old January 13, 2019, 20:29   #46
Quirk
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HugoTheGreat2011 View Post
I realized I asked something else than intended: my corrected question - does the enchantment's identification apply only to those items I can make?
Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HugoTheGreat2011 View Post
On a separate topic - various other things:

Does the Song of Elbereth work if player is blinded?
Yes.

Quote:
Originally Posted by HugoTheGreat2011 View Post
I noticed these too:
' command (reversed apostrophe) works as another ESC key.
When accessing the abilities via TAB key, TAB can be used to exit it.
When changing options, 't' can be used to toggle yes/no
Left arrow key can be used to exit out of the Smithing menu
All sounds plausible - never really looked at the key bindings in any detail.
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Old January 13, 2019, 21:13   #47
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quirk View Post
So I've discussed this a bit with wobbly already, and won't say much more than: I think the song proficiency on elves is absolutely canon, dwarves and men are rarely seen working magic through song if at all.
I think Song affinity makes a lot of sense for elves.

However, it's not very explicit, but I always imagined this was referring to some song-like magic:
The dwarves of yore made mighty spells,
While hammers fell like ringing bells


Quote:
With regard to removing Dex/Strength maluses, I think my preference would be to remove a Con point from the Sindar, and a Grace point from the dwarves. Nogrod would then gain back the Grace point to be the same as before, and Belegost would swap the Dex malus for having 0 Grace. This preserves the bruiser nature of Belegost and may even be a small buff. Sindar will lose out some from not having the extra Con, but I think Sindar are currently decently stronger than Naugrim
From a game aesthetic perspective, I really like the maluses. I think it makes the game more interesting by expanding the space of accessible characters. I'm also very willing to defend them on lore grounds.

I feel a bit negative about different abilities for different races, like it's undermining one of the nice subtleties of how the game differentiates them in favour of something very loud which breaks immersion a little. But I'm not sure how to justify this feeling.
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Old January 14, 2019, 03:11   #48
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I'm fairly neutral on stat changes, just a few comments from my perspective:

In regards to dwarfs I find a Nogrod actually has more dex then an Edain in practice, simply because playing with less then 3 con on an Edain leaves you next to no room for errors. Where things get painful is a Belegost smith in heavy armour with an axe, you no longer hit. Now it balances out in that you can take a fair bit of punishment but unfortunately play tends to feels very stodgy on this kind of build.

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Originally Posted by half View Post
Scaring monsters: Apart from the monster that kills you, you always manage to deal with the monster in some manner (be that sneaking past, fleeing, scaring, or killing). You get half the experience for each monster on first encountering it because that is easier to implement than getting it upon dealing with the monster. I'm happy with killing it being the only thing that grants extra experience. As why is scaring it off the level any better than scaring it into another room? or to sneaking past, or putting to sleep, etc.? If I were changing anything, it might be to drop the extra experience for killing it -- you already are rewarded with the items. (this would obviously require increasing experience a little to compensate)
Reasonable but would require a fair bit of rebalancing for pacifists & assassins. Pacifists currently require far less xp then kill 'em all builds. Assassins need a temptation to kill things, most stuff of value is on the floor & there are safer ways to move sleeping dragons then poking them in the eye.
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Old January 14, 2019, 05:19   #49
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I found a bug: Apparently, once I choose the Enchantment ability...it will ID anything that says {special}...For example, it IDed Treacherous Paths on some footwear laying on the ground...even though I didn't learn Armorsmith yet! (At the time, I didn't check to see if the Jewelry were affected, e.g. {special} Brass Lanterns, because I already learned Jewelry before I encountered the bug)
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Hugo = usually plays Halo, PosChengband and its Forks, and Sil

My YouTube channel, where I'm known as YggdrasilTid (includes my PosChengband gameplay+music):
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCqG...vf4c0P8ipsIeQQ

My most recent good try at PosChengband 7.0.0's nightmare-mode on Angband.live:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwAR0WOphUA

Last edited by HugoTheGreat2011; January 14, 2019 at 05:35.
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Old January 14, 2019, 07:05   #50
Wiwaxia
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Quote:
Originally Posted by half View Post
If I were changing anything, it might be to drop the extra experience for killing it -- you already are rewarded with the items. (this would obviously require increasing experience a little to compensate)
The more I think about this, the more I really like it. It removes an odd disadvantage of pacifist builds that doesn't seem to have a strong reason to be there, further pushes the point that there are things you really shouldn't bother to fight, encourages diving past where you can safely win fights, and cuts out the "running around 100ft killing tanglethorns for the last 10xp you need for the first forge" nonsense I've gotten into occasionally.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Quirk View Post
What I was sketching out last night is a structure that looks roughly like this:
  1. Song of Elbereth / Song of Challenge
  2. Song of Silence / Song of Staunching
  3. Song of Freedom / Song of Thresholds
  4. Song of Delvings / Song of Whetting (prerequisite Challenge)
  5. Song of Trees - (prerequisite Elbereth or Freedom)
  6. Song of Staying - (prerequisite Staunching or Thresholds)
  7. Song of Lorien - (prerequisite Silence)
  8. Song of Mastery - (prerequisite Elbereth or Lorien)
  9. Woven Themes
  10. Grace

Song of Staunching, based on Luthien's song of staunching sung to heal Beren, would shorten bleeding and more importantly greatly speed regeneration.
Song of Whetting I'm currently thinking gives an extra damage side. I don't like the old Sharpness implementation in which each additional Song point gives you 2% of Xd4 more damage against your opponents, it feels clumsy. On the other hand the canonical whetting spell allowed Beleg to sever metal shackles with a sword, which feels like it maxes out at more than just a damage side.

In both cases the scaling with Song is tricky. Songs tend to a linear scaling when for balance purposes this does not always work very well. I have tried to keep this, but in places it can lead to relatively inelegant implementation.

Having Staunching's regeneration scale linearly is problematic: it will do too little early on, and possibly too much late - particularly if Song is scaling a multiplier on the existing regeneration mechanic which also scales with Constitution. Ideally it would do enough early to save a player from death by poison, and still be usable later. I may try something like "Stops all bleeding and regenerates 2 + (Song/6) health per round" (the numbers here will be tweaked after much testing). I think it has to go quite early because it is potentially a useful emergency song that could be grabbed at the point you realise you won't survive the poison you just took.

Whetting scaling to multiple damage sides could easily become very broken, but perhaps something like 1 + (Song/12) damage sides would be plausible. The other mechanic I was debating was it granting the extra damage side to weapons weighing less than the singer's Song score, making it easier to whet a dagger than a greataxe. It might not be broken to have it grant actual sharpness to weapons weighing less than (Song / 5) lbs as daggers and shortswords are very much stealth weapons and the song could be a noisy one; you would need to get to 10 Song to whet a light longsword. This would make shortswords somewhat more viable without backstabs.

Whetting arguably shouldn't work on blunt weapons, particularly if it's granting actual sharpness, but this approach gets us toward the situation where you put aside your warhammer when you have to deal with an armoured opponent, which seems fundamentally wrong - I can't think of a better tool to deal with an enemy made of stone.

I'm not sure how I feel about prerequisites here. Prerequisites block off some builds, and punish skills: weaker higher-tier skills suffer from having a prerequisite, weaker lower-tier skills suffer from not being a prerequisite to a strong higher-tier skill. Delvings is not a prerequisite for anything, which may mean it is still too costly at 4 after the competition has hotted up; it may be better to swap its place with Silence, which will still be viable at 4 because it lives on an all-in Song/stealth build. I don't really want to split Challenge/Elbereth or Freedom/Thresholds because they make nice naturally opposed pairs at the same cost.
I like the new song tree design aesthetically, especially those two themed pairs. I'm not clear on how Song of Staunching is supposed to differ from the erstwhile Este. If I recall correctly, part of the issue with the original Este was the question of when you were supposed to sing it. If it's going to be a combat song, it needs to regenerate fast enough to compete with simply not taking that damage in the first place courtesy of Staying. If it's going to be a survivability song, it needs to regenerate enough to compete with ending unfavorable fights by scaring away enemies with Elbereth. Otherwise, it's left as a patch-up-after-battle song, which only really saves on turncount over regular healing, especially now that Thresholds makes it easier to make safe boltholes to rest.

Whetting granting sharpness by weapon weight is elegant. I'd be curious to see how it plays out in practice, although I imagine it would upset the light weapon vs. heavy weapon balancing you've already tried to do. It makes more intuitive sense for a whetting song to benefit knives more than axes rather than vis versa like adding a damage side would do. Spitballing, but in keeping with it being a whetting song you could have the effect build up over time as you sing it as you "sharpen" your blade.


A quick question about song interactions: does Freedom negate your own wards from Thresholds? I discovered that staves of freedom do, but I didn't have the spare experience to test the song.
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