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Old September 18, 2012, 12:06   #1
Timo Pietilš
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Resistance to stunning

This is a bit both, development and general speaking.

In earlier versions I didn't realize how many sources for stunning there was. Sound resistance was so easy to get that stunning from distance-attacks was quite rare. Now I have noticed that it is actually a major threat, and stunning protection is very hard to gain with combination of other good things.

What should we do about stunning? Make is less dangerous with more phases before KO "dazed/stunned/heavily stunned/KO"? Make more items granting stun protection? Make plasma/gravity/impact hounds a bit less powerful? Maybe give save throw before getting stunned? Resistance based on some stat, CON perhaps, much like 18/150 makes you theft-proof? Level-dependent resistance with caster level vs your level?

Or should we just leave it as it is, and just get used to the fact that stunning is now major threat?
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Old September 18, 2012, 12:17   #2
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Given how "easy" the game has been in recent years, I'd say leave it for a version or two and see. If it turns out that by 3.6 people are complaining loudly that way too many of their deaths are due to stunning, we can implement some of your many good ideas. But until it's killed a lot of people, it's probably a good thing.
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Old September 18, 2012, 14:38   #3
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I've been of the opinion that we should tone down gravity and time for a while. At least, we should tone down the damage from those attacks and leave them with the dangerous side effects. Unfortunately, there hasn't been much support from other players/devs on this issue. Force and Plasma both have very low damage caps. Plasma hounds are incredibly annoying, but not as bad as gravity/time hounds.

pstun is a very powerful ability. Crowns of serenity are reasonably competitive for many characters now.
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Old September 19, 2012, 09:56   #4
Timo Pietilš
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
pstun is a very powerful ability. Crowns of serenity are reasonably competitive for many characters now.
Yes, and for that reason you really, really, really want to get ESP from some other source than helmet. This is new phenomenon to me, usually it was the helmet to give me ESP and I was happy to get something else in other random ability things, but now I wish to get ESP in other things more than ever before. I think serenity is only non-artifact item guaranteed to give pStun, and only two artifacts give it too (both helmets).
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Old September 20, 2012, 04:26   #5
debo
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To be frank, I think Time Hounds are utterly ridiculous. I always felt that breathing time would be an ability best restricted to an ubermonster type (like a Titan or something) so that the risk/reward was worth it.

Basically, seeing Time Hounds = leave the level. I dunno how that's supposed to be fun

I loved Master Mystics when I played 3.3 because Stunning was a cool threat. I suspect it would be neat if early-level monsters could do it too, but not if every fifth monster can do it. I'm actually curious to play to find out.
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Old September 20, 2012, 05:55   #6
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Honestly, I don't like time hounds either. The should do negligible damage and they should not move at +20 speed OR pack size should be reduced to 3-4. Basically any monster that can kill a full-health, ultimate-gear character in a single turn should not be allowed.

Basically the existence of time hounds and similar always awake/insta-kill monsters has led to some silly compensation rules like always giving the player the first move on a level. No I don't think time hounds are fun as they currently exist, and I wish I could convince the rest of the dev-team of that truth.

I'd also say that in general angband pack sizes are too large. I'd rather have smaller pack sizes along with greater monster density. Killing large packs, winds up being too large of a percentage of the game and is probably the biggest source of tedium there is. Unfortunately (for me) changing these things means I need to essentially make my own variant since this is really quintessential Angband, and is unlikely to change in the near future.

/end rant.
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Old September 20, 2012, 06:29   #7
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I think I've been killed once by time hounds. I've been killed far more times by gravity, force, or plasma hounds. Time's effects are pretty nasty, but they're not as instantly debilitating as being teleported/slowed/stunned. If you're careful, then you can deal with time hounds. Since they are so powerful, they make navigation of the dungeon interesting.

I do think that we could stand to have smaller packs, though. An absurd amount of Angband is killing large homogenous groups; mixing it up more creates more opportunities for interesting fights.

Hm, idea -- have associations between monsters, and then when you spawn a pack, you instead pick a monster and any monsters that are directly associated with it and spawn a pack of those. So for example, enchantresses would associate with dragons, priests would associate with templar, molds would associate with mushrooms.

ZAngband and its derivatives had a feature that I always mentally referred to as "posses" though I don't know if it had an official term. That was basically groups of monsters that shared the same letter. So you'd see a 'p' group and it'd just be randomly-selected depth-appropriate 'p' monsters. Some of those could get quite nasty.
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Old September 20, 2012, 08:49   #8
Mikko Lehtinen
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Derakon, Halls of Mist generates monsters much like you suggest, and goes even further.

Monsters are placed in heterogenous groups of 1-4, not individually. To compensate, there are more empty rooms. Most of the monsters in a group come from the same realm (Thornwild, Skulgard, Chaos, Aether). Creatures from Skultgard are placed in 'civilized' rooms with furniture, Thornwild monsters are placed in wilderness. Chaos and Aether are placed at random anywhere after all the other monsters have been generated if there's still demand for more monsters.

Traditional group monsters come in smaller packs (and generate less loot).

People monsters have both races (randomized, for example lizardman) and classes (templar might count as both priest and warrior). The game generates both racial and professional groups of people. (This is an old Ey feature.)
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Old September 20, 2012, 22:55   #9
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For really sophisticated monster ecosystems we need to look at Unangband. There's a lot of really good stuff there about spawning varieties of monsters in interesting and flavourful ways.

@Derakon: are you sure your low number of time hound deaths isn't precisely because they're so insanely scary? Gravity I grant you is known-dangerous, but deaths to force and plasma hounds often occur precisely because the perceived danger is lower than the real danger - the opposite of the time hound problem.

@fizzix: I think nerfing both time hounds and pack sizes in v4 would be an excellent move - we could then take away the guaranteed-first-move stuff and restore some lost tension ...
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Old September 20, 2012, 23:47   #10
Derakon
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Magnate View Post
@Derakon: are you sure your low number of time hound deaths isn't precisely because they're so insanely scary? Gravity I grant you is known-dangerous, but deaths to force and plasma hounds often occur precisely because the perceived danger is lower than the real danger - the opposite of the time hound problem.
I've gotten time breathed on me plenty of times. Probably more by vortices than by hounds, but the hounds do get me sometimes. It's very bad but it's not fatal unless you decide to stick around and let your stats get nerfed into oblivion.

A single turn spent in LOS of time hounds is probably not fatal. A single turn spent in LOS of plasma or force hounds can easily be so -- let alone gravity hounds. Of course, a single plasma or force hound in isolation is not a big threat, while a single time hound can still be very aggravating.
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