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Old March 20, 2020, 03:38   #11
Sky
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i did say the blackguard didn't have a niche to stand out as a class of its own ...
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Old March 20, 2020, 03:58   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick View Post
Reduce minimum weapon weight by half.
I changed how this works for jb so that blackguards are rewarded for heavy weapons, instead of just punished for light weapons. Basically I found the middle point of weapon weights & anything below is effectively 20% heavier & everything above 20% lighter for the blackguard. (20% the difference between the middle pt).
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Old March 20, 2020, 08:07   #13
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Originally Posted by Grotug View Post
there is something about this mechanic that feels cheesy to me.
This is a primary concern. That's why I'm presenting the general idea here rather than waiting to publish a playable version. In my head, rage and the joy of combat combining with shadow magic to power spells and regeneration makes sense. But if no one else buys that then I'll go back to the drawing board.

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I'm not sure how you can remove healing and HP regen while keeping @ in battles most of the time, though
Yes, agreed, and that's why we are using significant HP regen when the player uses MP, usually in battles.

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since Blackguard degenerates mana quickly they could regenerate health quickly
This is what is happening when the player has SPs.

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I do like the idea of blackguards losing stealth every 10 levels...I'm not too concerned about low stealth ruining vaults.
OK, good. You're the second player to say this so far.

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I like the idea of aggro only affecting monsters lower than @'s level.
I believe this is the most important part of my response: Would you say this should be in addition to negative stealth, or choose one or the other?

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I'm wary of having regeneration happening on HP as well as MP from combat. I think it probably should be one or the other
My first playable test had only MP regen from combat. But as you pointed out above, that made it really hard for the BG to stay in combat.

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the more I think about it the more I like MP negative-regeneration with mana regenerating through damage delivery
Great!

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you could maybe give a health bonus only when Blackguards deal damage to (only evil?) monsters at a higher level than them
Vampirism is a very tempting way to go. The current 1-to-1 vampirism in Angband would almost certainly be OP, though we could cut that rate down. In the end, it just seemed more interesting to make a battle rage BG than a vampire BG. Nick led by example in avoiding vampirism, and I eventually reached the same conclusion.

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I personally would really like to play a class that does not need to rely on teleport other in order to succeed
But if the BG isn't healing during combat, and he isn't TP'ing away to quaff potions, how does he survive? You suggested damage resistance or absorption, and I agree that's one way to go.

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Finally, I would discourage any kind of healing for Blackguard (why can a blackguard get healing when my Ranger cannot?) and instead focus on coming up with creative alternatives to healing.
Well, that's what I'm trying to do. The BG doesn't have any healing spells, instead he has a kind of hyper regen. Attacking in melee and getting hit generates rage/joy/energy which is represented by SP. As that energy is used, it in turn helps the BG recover or push through injury. It's not very spiky like when a Paladin casts heal. It's more smooth like fast regeneration. As I mentioned, right now it's only around a 25% rebate. A paladin can get back 25% HP much easier. Could maybe simplify it a bit by removing the connection to casting, but it felt like the right choice to give the player more agency.

Thanks for the feedback! Although you bring up a lot of disagreements, I've gone through a lot of the same thought processes you detail here, so we're actually closer to being on the same page than it might appear.
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Old March 20, 2020, 08:08   #14
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Originally Posted by Sky View Post
i did say the blackguard didn't have a niche to stand out as a class of its own ...
I hope you are saying that this new proposal will give BGs their own niche.
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Old March 20, 2020, 08:16   #15
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Originally Posted by wobbly View Post
I changed how this works for jb so that blackguards are rewarded for heavy weapons, instead of just punished for light weapons. Basically I found the middle point of weapon weights & anything below is effectively 20% heavier & everything above 20% lighter for the blackguard. (20% the difference between the middle pt).
Totally agree! Two points from my initial brainstorm list to Nick:

"Penalizing the BG by increasing the min weapon stat might not be the right approach (min weight is an ugly bandaid for a screwed up weight-to-blows system anyway)."

"What if the effective weight of a weapon when you're not wearing a shield is (wgt-5)/2+5? I.e., every lb over 5 only counts for half for reducing blows? For all classes. I don't think it would be enough of an incentive to abandon a shield in most cases, but with this in place we could do something to encourage BGs to use big two handed weapons."

I'm not saying my proposals are better than yours. I'm saying we're identifying some of the same issues. In what I actually have programmed and am testing, though, BG spells are used to reward heavy weapons or low blows.
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Old March 20, 2020, 10:37   #16
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If Blackguards are supposed to revolve around a sort of "battle-rage" idea of combat (presumably in contrast to warriors who are more careful, deliberate, and use ranged combat as well as melee), then I think it would be reasonable to represent it by something other than SP, personally.

My idea is for Blackguards to have a sort of special numerical effect, which could be called Rage, or Adrenaline, or Bloodthirst, or anything.
Rage would increase when the Blackguard gets hit, but increase more when hit from range, or when hit hard, would increase when the Blackguard kills a monster, and would decay instantly if the Blackguard gets out of sight of all monsters (this creates weird situations with invisibility and blindness, which should by all rights be enraging, but would actually end Rage with this implementation, but that could be fixed). Rage would also decay normally, in combat, by something like 10% every turn, and the decay gets turned into SP (this means that after most fights, as they calm down they get their SP back, and it encourages use of SP throughout the fight, to avoid wasting resources). A spell, called Berserker or something, could be used to create Rage manually when needed.
This Rage effect would give, proportionally to its value, a small general speed boost (capped at +5 or lower), a large boost to movement speed (to make Blackguards able to navigate battlefields easily while fighting, and also create tactical depth by allowing the Blackguard to run away to the nearest corner, where they lose all their Rage, recharging their SP and allowing them to reengage in the fight a bit later once they've healed up and rebuffed), increased critical hit chance (IMO a thematic combat boost for them to get, that also rewards use of large-dice heavy weapons), and damage reduction (this would presumably be the most powerful part of the cocktail). It would also reduce the effectiveness of healing and cause aggravation in a radius that increases with Rage, as compensation for being very powerful. Any of these boosts could, if wanted, be gated behind a temporary buff.

This version of Blackguards should be absolutely garbage at ranged combat of any sort. More or less incapable of doing anything to anyone not right next to them, but pretty good at getting next to things and then doing things to them. Perhaps one of their higher-level buffs could give them temporary resistance to side-effects of melee hits (like disenchantment and such) that normally punish people for trying to use melee? Their stealth wouldn't necessarily be garbage (let's say, warrior-tier), but the second they get into a fight everyone knows it and joins in. Their fights are not "start hitting and don't stop until everything dies or you die" but revolve around a sort of tempo, with tactical breaks in tougher fights. They don't mind having a lot of enemies, but try to avoid being surrounded.

If casting still provides a HP refund, this would create a situation where getting into a fight gets you a combat boost that decays into SP, which decays into HP, which I think is a reasonable buffer to have to reward fighting with HP without having Vampirism.
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Old March 20, 2020, 11:41   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Philip View Post
My idea is for Blackguards to have a sort of special numerical effect, which could be called Rage, or Adrenaline, or Bloodthirst, or anything.
Rage would increase when the Blackguard gets hit, but increase more when hit from range, or when hit hard, would increase when the Blackguard kills a monster, and would decay instantly if the Blackguard gets out of sight of all monsters (this creates weird situations with invisibility and blindness, which should by all rights be enraging, but would actually end Rage with this implementation, but that could be fixed). Rage would also decay normally, in combat, by something like 10% every turn, and the decay gets turned into SP (this means that after most fights, as they calm down they get their SP back, and it encourages use of SP throughout the fight, to avoid wasting resources). A spell, called Berserker or something, could be used to create Rage manually when needed.
This is very close to what they already have - bloodlust, from the Thirst for Blood spell. This is started by casting, but then charges up by killing things and gives big melee bonuses when highly charged.
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Old March 20, 2020, 11:58   #18
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Lots in this post, but I'm just going to pick out a couple things

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This version of Blackguards should be absolutely garbage at ranged combat of any sort.
I agree. Where on the scale of other classes do you think they should fall? In the version I'm working on I've dropped their Shoot skill 10 points to 40:30, which is equal to the Druid, less than Paladin and much less than Warrior or Ranger. But still twice as high as Mage and Necromancer. Also, their melee skill is unchanged from previous versions -- equal to Ranger, slightly less than Paladin and significantly less than Warrior. Presumably they have enough tricks to make up for this.

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Perhaps one of their higher-level buffs could give them temporary resistance to side-effects of melee hits (like disenchantment and such) that normally punish people for trying to use melee?
We're on the same page here. Current test version gives temporary rConf and FrAct at CL12 and a restoration spell at CL40, though that feels late to me.

Disenchantment is one of the melee side-effects we're currently forcing the BG to navigate without help. Wouldn't be very fun if they had immunity to all the negative melee effects... or would it??
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Old March 20, 2020, 12:01   #19
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Well, kind of. My proposal is for a more powerful mechanic that is a central class feature, rather than a spell-based effect that you only get later on in the game. Also, my proposal is less focused on boosting combat (though of course better crits are a combat boost, and so is +speed) and more on encouraging a particular sort of battlefield control/management. Also, it doubles as a form of SP regen in my proposal.

EDIT: Agree that BG should be vulnerable in melee in some form. I think having them on the caster scale of ranged combat is more or less correct. The melee skill seems at the right point too, so long as they're not horrible early game due to the light weapon penalty, which it seems you're moving away from anyway.

Last edited by Philip; March 20, 2020 at 12:09.
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Old March 22, 2020, 02:16   #20
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Originally Posted by Nick View Post
This is very close to what they already have - bloodlust, from the Thirst for Blood spell. This is started by casting, but then charges up by killing things and gives big melee bonuses when highly charged.
Does this expire and need to be re-cast periodically, or does it effectively last indefinitely as long as the BG stays in combat?
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