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Old September 20, 2010, 13:18   #31
buzzkill
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Quote:
Originally Posted by krugar View Post
Some thoughts on additional traps:

- Instadeath (tought one, I agree)
This just should never happen. Even I don't want traps killing healthy characters that aren't way OoD. However, (at least some) traps should be dangerous or unpredictable enough that they be taken seriously on thier own (like uniques, kind of).

Quote:
[Player Maximum HP] * [Depth (level)] / 100 * [Trap Dam Factor (TDF)]
I have a knee-jerk reaction to avoid basing any dungeon creation on a character's particular stats or equiptment. It's bad precedent.
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Old September 20, 2010, 14:54   #32
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Originally Posted by Nomad View Post
I think the way to go with later dungeon traps is to move away from straight HP damage - there's no real way to make it dangerous without unreasonable chances of instadeath - to things that cause the player inconvenience instead. Traps that cause earthquakes, destroy floor and inventory items, drain charges and mana or do nether damage, summon breeders, sticky curse things that you're wielding, teleport you back up several dungeon levels... Stuff that won't kill you unless you're already in trouble, but will make you lose time replacing and uncursing gear or regaining lost ground.
This looks like the best solution to me. Disenchantment, charge drain, draining 50%-100% of SP, hallucination, etc... are all great effects to add to traps, making trap detection and avoidance that much more important and interesting, while not excessively unfair.

Increasing noticeably their difficulty to be disarmed would make the spells/scrolls/wands actually useful also.

Also (and i realise this would be very difficult to code) changing the way they are generated and placed on the dungeon floor could have a serious impact on gameplay - ie for example instead of having only one or two disjoined ones in a room, have a whole line of them effectively dividing in half the space, and actually having a tactical impact on fighting monsters; or place quite a few in a row in corridors, etc...
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Old September 20, 2010, 15:11   #33
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Re: monsters triggering traps, back in the 2.8 days I actually wrote a feature to do this. It's straightforward to make traps on icky floors harmless to monsters. Presumably any monsters on the level have long since learned how to safely navigate the vault.
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Old September 20, 2010, 18:25   #34
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I like bebo's idea of disruptive traps...charge drain or make your rods trigger (therefore force you to wait for them to recharge before you can use them again). But, this is likely a disproportionate penalty, as it has little effect on casters, who typically use items a great deal less.

Another part of me has kicked in. WAY back in the day...in early D&D, traps were a dungeon staple. There were books, books, and more books about traps; I think I still have Grimtooth I, II, and IV somewhere. This was the day where the DM, fairly often, ended up almost in competition with the players; certainly, I saw that mindset more often than I care to recall.

Things changed tho. I remember an article (Dragon mag?) titled "Do you trap *your* bedroom door?" The gist was, traps don't exist in a vacuum. Don't just throw them out there so they mess over the players. Include them when they make sense...not just because you can. In tabletop, that kind of random trap inclusion forced paranoia...you ALWAYS moved carefully, you ALWAYS checked doors before opening, etc. It was boring, seriously unrealistic, and ultimately IMO disrupted the story by weakening suspension of disbelief.

The situation that we have now, is that negative scenario. We *are* paranoid; we check for traps ALL the time. (Admittedly, it's less of a disruption here than it is in tabletop.) Perhaps it's time to reconsider this. But if we want to take up this discussion, I'd suggest starting a new thread (about traps generally).
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Old September 25, 2010, 13:29   #35
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzkill View Post
I have a knee-jerk reaction to avoid basing any dungeon creation on a character's particular stats or equiptment. It's bad precedent.
You mean you don't like the fact certain game features may scale according to a player attribute like HP? Or that you like it?

As far as HP is concerned (and trap damage), it's a fail-proof method to guarantee scaling of damage throughout the entire game experience. Other elements introduced into a possible formula can guarantee enough deviation so that players may encounter traps that barely damaged them and traps that nearly or effectively killed them (only if the player was already hurt). All on the same level. However it ensures that the top of the bell curve can shift with player progression.

But the issue really is what do we want from traps? A real definite threat, or not? Because I honestly can't see how an "immovable non aggressive monster" like a trap can become a challenge throughout the entire game experience otherwise. You risk creating instadeath traps, or barely noticeable traps no one bothers with, by refusing to balance them against the player, but instead against the dungeon level.
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Old September 25, 2010, 16:30   #36
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Originally Posted by krugar View Post
You mean you don't like the fact certain game features may scale according to a player attribute like HP? Or that you like it?
I believe that the dungeon should be a dungeon. It shouldn't customize itself to a particular adventurer. It should be generally difficult for everyone to navigate (this is already heavily negated by the fact that player can pretty much choose their own stats).

Styling the dungeon fit a particulate character negates the other random aspects of Angband. If traps are going to deal damage based on the players HP then there's one less reason to worry about maximizing you CON. The slippery-slope is that once traps are established as scalable, then how long before monster damage gets scaled as well. After all, it's the same argument and some people dislike the instadeath nature of Angband.

The solution, make trap dangerous, possibly deadly (esp to weak characters). If you're low on HP or resists, then you need to beef up your detection (just as in other aspects of the game). Until imperfect detection becomes available (which I support) it should work like a charm. IMO, my suggestions earlier in this thread IIRC would be no more deadly than a current summoning trap, or old style paralysis.

Why don't we give certain monsters the ability to silently set traps every once in a while. A silent spell like ability, not the current trap creation which telegraphs itself.
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Old September 25, 2010, 18:27   #37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by buzzkill View Post
If traps are going to deal damage based on the players HP then there's one less reason to worry about maximizing you CON.
Before I answer this, a small disclamer: I do generally agree with your reaction to scalable content based on player attributes. But like most other aspects of game design the trick is deciding where and when a given methodology is worth a different approach. More on that below.

Now, as for that quote, yes. Indeed trap damage will be scaled accordingly when players raise their CON essentially reducing any benefits of doing so as far as traps are concerned. But there's plenty of other reasons to raise CON, with traps already not being one of them with the current system. It's not that basing trap damage on player HP will introduce something radically new to the decision of raising or not CON.

The problem I see here is that traps are ubiquitous across the entire game and trying to scale them according to some element outside player control means that if you make it too easy, traps will be ignored (that's what happens today), and if you make it too hard traps will almost single-handedly determine when players take stairs down. Finding the mid term is not possible because it will depend on the characteristics of each class and even on the player's playing style.

In that case, I'd rather see traps as they are today then to see traps being the reason why I would need to replay the same dungeon levels over and over again until I could raise my HP high enough to be able to tackle with the lower dungeon traps.

Quote:
The slippery-slope is that once traps are established as scalable, then how long before monster damage gets scaled as well.
With this I have to agree. If used as a basis to argue for other similar changes, then it loses value and can even become dangerous.

But then and again, I'm solely operating on the basis that developers/designers are of the sensible sort. That they understand an exception to a rule is not a rule for further exceptions. All in all it is about flexibility of beliefs; knowing that not set of design methodologies is perfect and that adopting different strategies in key places may prove invaluable.

Quote:
The solution, make trap dangerous, possibly deadly (esp to weak characters). If you're low on HP or resists, then you need to beef up your detection (just as in other aspects of the game). Until imperfect detection becomes available (which I support) it should work like a charm. IMO, my suggestions earlier in this thread IIRC would be no more deadly than a current summoning trap, or old style paralysis.
Which is actually entirely within the scope of what I propose. What makes you think a formula based on character HP doesn't handle this?
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Old September 25, 2010, 20:27   #38
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What makes you think a formula based on character HP doesn't handle this?
No. Not ever. Absolutely the worst possible scheme, IMO. This benefits weak characters and penalizes stronger ones, which is WRONG, and ridiculously illogical as well.

Damage depends on factors related to the *source* of the damage...so, a monster's current hit points for a breath weapon, or use depth to scale power for traps, or @'s weapon statistics...those define damage. You don't look to see how strong the target is, as a factor.
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Old September 25, 2010, 21:50   #39
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One thing to do is consider Dwarf Fortress. Traps are a staple there and there are lots of saved maps on display illustrating their use.

There are two ways to set traps in DF that I know of: massed at the entrance(s) and traps in corridors to catch maddened dwarfs. The latter would also apply to any monsters that breach the gate defenses.

This is how intelligences place traps, and what should be simulated. This means traps should never be placed inside rooms, and should be concentrated in the corridors giving access to stairways. At least the part about never placing them in rooms is easy, at least for some variants of the dungeon generation code which place special terrain in corridors.

Since most players will travel through intersections this is another good place for traps since it can be learned and avoided which makes it more interesting gameplay.
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Old September 25, 2010, 21:51   #40
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If you want to scale damage (which I'm not convinced is a great idea), then you should base the damage on the dlvl. I firmly agree that nothing external to the character should scale with the character's stats.
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