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Old June 24, 2017, 03:54   #11
gameplay appreciator
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Agree that it would be good to flatten stat dependence of bpr and introduce an experience level component. It would be quite rad, in my opinion, if the role of stat potions could be reduced or even eliminated in some future version. Though it is not necessary to scum for them, the incentive is definitely there.

About pathfinding, there's good reason to rethink the situation vis a vis ESP and detection, all the more so given pathfinding that frequently moves monsters from a sleeping state to an actually dangerous state. The difference between ESP and detection from magic is largely convenience. There is nothing stopping you from spamming detection spells and in fact it is a very good thing to do from the perspective of winning the game. Detection spells are actually better at detecting monsters than ESP so you should use them even if you have ESP! Now that monsters aren't just going to get stuck on a wall most of the time when they wake, this is even more true.

If you are willing to grant the player access to monster detection magic, you've already given away the farm from a design perspective. Yes, some players, maybe most, are too "lazy" (i.e. actually want to enjoy playing the game instead of spamming the same spell constantly out of combat) to use detection to its full potential, but this is no reason to punish them. Monster movement is deterministic, at least for dangerous monsters, so the experienced player knows with pretty high precision where a monster is N turns after casting detection for small N. There is no real difference between seeing them once every 10 turns and every turn as with ESP.

Honestly, killing detection would be a step in the right direction. What is the point of mechanics like light or limited line of sight when you can just use detection magic? Why allow core mechanics like that to be made irrelevant by a spell that appears in the book your guy starts with? Once you've decided to move away from the one-shot-kill-out-of-darkness paradigm, you gotta start rethinking the basic questions.

Last edited by gameplay appreciator; June 24, 2017 at 04:01.
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Old June 26, 2017, 12:42   #12
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Agree that it would be good to flatten stat dependence of bpr and introduce an experience level component. It would be quite rad, in my opinion, if the role of stat potions could be reduced or even eliminated in some future version. Though it is not necessary to scum for them, the incentive is definitely there.

About pathfinding, there's good reason to rethink the situation vis a vis ESP and detection, all the more so given pathfinding that frequently moves monsters from a sleeping state to an actually dangerous state. The difference between ESP and detection from magic is largely convenience. There is nothing stopping you from spamming detection spells and in fact it is a very good thing to do from the perspective of winning the game. Detection spells are actually better at detecting monsters than ESP so you should use them even if you have ESP! Now that monsters aren't just going to get stuck on a wall most of the time when they wake, this is even more true.

If you are willing to grant the player access to monster detection magic, you've already given away the farm from a design perspective. Yes, some players, maybe most, are too "lazy" (i.e. actually want to enjoy playing the game instead of spamming the same spell constantly out of combat) to use detection to its full potential, but this is no reason to punish them. Monster movement is deterministic, at least for dangerous monsters, so the experienced player knows with pretty high precision where a monster is N turns after casting detection for small N. There is no real difference between seeing them once every 10 turns and every turn as with ESP.

Honestly, killing detection would be a step in the right direction. What is the point of mechanics like light or limited line of sight when you can just use detection magic? Why allow core mechanics like that to be made irrelevant by a spell that appears in the book your guy starts with? Once you've decided to move away from the one-shot-kill-out-of-darkness paradigm, you gotta start rethinking the basic questions.
Would it not be easier to generate a new Shrieker style mushroom that makes a noise if detection or ESP see it (does not have to go off immediately). Easy to kill if not ESP i.e. only makes a noise if detected or ESP.
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Old June 27, 2017, 01:13   #13
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Removing monster detection seems pretty easy to me, so no I wouldn't think the new shrieker thing would be easier. I think you would still want to spam detection if there were a monster like what you suggest anyway.
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Old June 27, 2017, 09:57   #14
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Having a monster that aggravates when detection/ESP is used wouldn't be enough to prevent me using it, certainly, or even have any concerns about using it

Although it's not a bad idea for a monster
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Old June 27, 2017, 10:14   #15
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Would it not be easier to generate a new Shrieker style mushroom that makes a noise if detection or ESP see it (does not have to go off immediately). Easy to kill if not ESP i.e. only makes a noise if detected or ESP.
Getting rid of detection is an interesting idea, but the game won't be angband anymore. Abd why stop there? Get rid of teleport spells, too. Of course the result is that everyone would have to play Paladin for every character, but so what? They're both way over powered techniques that really interfere with balance.
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Old June 27, 2017, 12:42   #16
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Getting rid of detection is an interesting idea, but the game won't be angband anymore. Abd why stop there? Get rid of teleport spells, too. Of course the result is that everyone would have to play Paladin for every character, but so what? They're both way over powered techniques that really interfere with balance.
I agree that getting rid of detection would not be a good idea, hence the suggestion to limit it as the perfect solution you should always do. My thought was that if you see this monster via ESP or detection you would then have to decide if you are willing to wake up all the close monster (distance to be decided) or assuming nothing has woken up, try to sneak close enough to kill it before something more dangerous wakes up.
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Old June 27, 2017, 13:43   #17
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One problem with removing detection is that in the mid-game, several monsters start appearing that can kill the player character in one turn thanks to breathe attacks which includes gravity hounds (floor 35), AMHD (floor 43) and Drolems (floor 44). Being on those floors the without the necessary hp to survive from this monster (monsters in the case of gravity hounds) is likely to happen (unless you do a lot of grinding). This mean

Another problem with removing detection is that Out of depth monsters tend to spawn in vaults and a lot of those can kill the player character in one turn by being sufficiently out of depth. Since being killed in one turn is very possible in vaults that appear in the early-mid game, its best to ignore any vaults until the late game to avoid this.
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Old June 27, 2017, 13:48   #18
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I think I'm going to try a character soon that has the movement keys mapped to 'detect monsters then move'
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Old June 27, 2017, 15:14   #19
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Would it not be easier to generate a new Shrieker style mushroom that makes a noise if detection or ESP see it (does not have to go off immediately). Easy to kill if not ESP i.e. only makes a noise if detected or ESP.
There are a number of monsters in Angband that owe their genesis directly to Rogue. It's often easy to recognize these because of their similarities in both Angband and Nethack. Umber Hulks, for instance, behave exactly the same in both games, the only difference being that they are represented by 'X' in Angband and 'U' in Nethack.

Another example is the Mind Flayer, which is a magenta 'h' in both games. In Angband, Mind Flayers are melee monsters with INT and WIS draining attacks; they're weak enough that they're little more than an annoyance. By the time they show up, two or three cold bolts will take them out, and there's no reason for characters who care about INT or WIS to ever engage them in melee. In Nethack, the Mind Flayer is often the first monster to be genocided, because it's incredibly dangerous. It will eat your brain, leading to permanent stat loss (not too different from what we have here) and eventually death (without running out of hitpoints). I don't think the latter in thematically in keeping with Angband; however, they also have the ability to detect PCs with ESP, and to lock onto it and attack without line-of-sight! We could combat (arguably) overpowered detection and ESP by beefing up Mind Flayers to wake on magical detection and ESP and have the ability to attack without line-of-sight with confusion, hallucination, blindness, and stunning attacks for small amounts of damage. Their melee can stay as it is, and their MO is to actively avoid the PC, while continuing to attack. Mind Flayers would only be able to hit you with these special attacks if you are magically detecting them, so they're only dangerous if you allow them to be, and they're only dangerous when you can't see them. We could have graduated levels with increased HP, damage, and effect duration, say Mind Flayer, Master Mind Flayer, and Grand Master Mind Flayer; maybe MMF can phase and GMMF can teleport and teleport other. This would give the dungeon a powerful way to combat detection without effectively destroying stealth.
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Old June 28, 2017, 22:51   #20
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Getting rid of detection is an interesting idea, but the game won't be angband anymore. Abd why stop there? Get rid of teleport spells, too. Of course the result is that everyone would have to play Paladin for every character, but so what? They're both way over powered techniques that really interfere with balance.
Actually, if the current maintainers release a game that diverges from previous versions primarily in removing detection, all they have to do is call it "angband" and it will still be angband. Getting rid of teleportation effects would be another excellent change. Again, all they'd have to do is keep calling it "angband." Suggestions that such and such an otherwise plausible change will undermine the basic character of a game turn out to be wrong in retrospect. Every. Single. Time.

Put another way, if angband is at bottom a game characterized by constantly recasting detection spells, the time to change is now.
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