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Old September 12, 2016, 16:20   #1
chris
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[Announce] Poschengband 5.0.1 Released

Another release of PosChengband (5.0.1) is available in the usual spot. This is just a playtesting release with a few major gameplay changes, but no new classes have been added (I've committed myself to playtesting all the Chengband classes until I am satisfied before adding new stuff. At the moment, I'm working on Warlocks and have tested the Spider (fun!) and Hound pacts, and like them both.) I should also mention that I haven't accessed the internet since the last release, which was a bombshell change to object lore. So I haven't had a chance to see or address all the problems. I'll respond to those for 5.0.2

Now, what changed this release?

Gameplay Changes:
[1] Confusing Lights has been toned down. Seriously, that was crazy before
[2] OK, it was a bit too easy to win with devices, so I made Rockets come slightly later and have higher casting costs. Tiamat got a new reward to celebrate this change.
[3] Grow Mold no longer spams Death molds.
[4] Big change to Archery multipliers and ranges. I never liked the Chengband changes, and some inspection showed that Short Bows and Light Crossbows were too powerful, since they retained the faster shooting rate. In fact, Short Bows are the most damage effective, being even more effective than Heavy Crossbows, which is a bit silly. Ranges have been restored and multipliers reduced, but not all the way to Hengband levels (e.g. Short Bows are now 2.50x). If you are upgrading, your Short Bow and Light Crossbow multipliers will be reduced.
[5] The Birth Autoroller is now a bit more generous. You *can* do two 17s if you are greedy. Or 3 16s. Or 16, 16, 15, 15 even ...
[6] Added option to display range to target. This is mostly for Warlocks, who have extremely gimped targetting ranges, and often need to know when monsters are in range. The option is called display_distance and the range will show up in the monster list for visible monsters, as well as when using the target and look commands.
[7] Jewelry drops from dungeon guardians, quest rewards and DROP_GREAT are no longer insulting in the early game. For example, one of my players got a Barbarian Talisman with -2 Int and nothing else! No more!!
[8] no_wilderness: Playing with this option means you forgo stat gains from dungeon guardians. To compensate, you will gain a chosen stat for each random quest completed (i.e. DL6, DL12, DL24 etc quests in Angband)

Class Playtesting Changes:
[1] Samurai and Mystics no longer automatically concentrate to charge their power. It's annoying to do this by hand, but you don't always want or need the supercharge.
[2] Rune-Knights get reduced benefits from Clarity and Great Clarity.
[3] Tweaked Book of Shadows for Burglary rogues.
[4] Mystics can browse powers to display effective damage
[5] Leprechauns no longer have mana, but instead use gold for their powers. Also, they no longer need quite so much gold to receive various bonuses. They also have a new power called Hoarding.
[6] Giants were a bit silly in the start, being quite weak. I changed their stat allocation so they start stronger, but gain strength less quickly. They are also more stupid, less wise, and quite clumsy.
[7] I playtested a Balrog and found the casting costs a bit too high.
[8] Warrior's Sword Dancing is *much* easier. But still fairly useless ... sigh.
[9] Fixed Magic Eater's regeneration rate for ego regen devices. It was quite a bit too fast before. I finally playtested to completion and found this build strong, but acceptable ... and fun
[10] Magic Eaters: Object display now shows the regen rate.
[11] Magic Eaters: Auto detect traps and Auto ID now work.
[12] Scouts were tweaked, with a few new abilities. It took surprisingly little to make this class fun for me to play, though I haven't played all the way thru yet. Try sniping with the Arrow of Bard some time!
[13] Warlocks: I'm in the middle of playtesting. Angels lose Invulnerability and get Crusade instead (untested). Various warlock pacts offer thematic ways to gain Economical Mana (e.g. Undead Warlock can use the Stone of Death). New abilities added ... But I'm still working on Warlocks, so more to follow.
[14] Evil Priests: Since good priests have an affinity for Life magic, evil priests get a bonus to Death magic. Also, why all the qualms about edged weapons if your evil god delights in bloodshed? Icky weapons, and Bless Weapon are only for good priests (Basically, one never played evil priests before, since Healing is so powerful. Now, perhaps, there will be some more reason to choose the dark side?)
[15] Draconian Metamorphosis: As a Monk, your postures will now effect your innate dragon attack deadliness. I would have playtested this change more, but got squished by Hastur shortly after CL35!

Bug Fixes:
[1] Fixed Barbarian Talisman in the Tengu and Death Swords quest.
[2] Brand Fire/Poison spells weren't giving appropriate resistances.
[3] Fixed Object Lore problem with Ego activations.
[4] Fixed SegFault when viewing Cheat Options.
[5] Doppelganger Samurai/Mystics now decay supercharged mana correctly.
[6] Fixed themed jewelry drops (e.g. Archers should drop rings of archery).
[7] Fixed AI Bug with Shoot posture. Monsters with this AI can now melee if the player is adjacent.
[8] Crossbowmaster's Overdraw was adding +0.01x to the multiplier, rather than +1.00x. (Trifling, I know ...)
[9] Vulnerability to fear no longer removes the player's chances of saving. It was fun to die thanks to my Cloak of Cowardice, and probably deserved as well, but players deserve some chance!

Reported Issues:
[1] Fixed gold exploits with the Rune-Knight
[2] Doppelgangers need to repaint the effect list after stopping mimicry

Minor Tweaks:
[1] Glove encumbrance is displayed in the status list.
[2] Fix message spam for characters that auto Clear Mind. Turn off disturb_minor to remove these messages. (I use disturb_minor quite a bit for message suppression).
[3] Monster Recall now includes the max depth when necessary.
[4] Staves of Identify now come in larger sizes. I've seen them up to 70 charges! You should no longer need to carry 2 in the end game.

Aside: If you are viewing changes to the git repository, you might want to use the --ignore-all-space option. My editor (QtCreator) has an option to clean up whitespace for the entire file as you make changes. Mostly this is the removal of trailing spaces, but it also makes sure the file ends on a blank line to avoid compiler warnings on certain platforms.
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Old September 13, 2016, 06:12   #2
HugoTheGreat2011
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Great work! The one change making the difference for me in a good way is the change to autoroller.
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My YouTube channel, where I'm known as YggdrasilTid (includes my PosChengband gameplay+music):
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My most recent good try at PosChengband 7.0.0's nightmare-mode on Angband.live:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwAR0WOphUA
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Old September 13, 2016, 12:14   #3
Squeak
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Thanks for the changes!

I had a few suggestions for some neglected classes:
1. Blue mages - currently their spells do not benefit from damage bonuses from rings of wizardry. It would make sense IMHO if they do.
2. Archaeologists - with the auto-ID option there is hardly any advantage to playing one, and even without it they are quite underpowered. While they have some powers related to whip use I rarely use whips as I usually find a better weapon. Perhaps archaeologists should have an additional equipment slot that would be dedicated only to whips? That way you could always have a whip on you in addition to your primary weapon. Another useless skill is Polish Shield as by the time you get it you have usually already found a shield of reflection. Polish shield would be useful though if it could be used on artifact or ego shields to add the reflection flag. Perhaps only temporarily?
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Old September 13, 2016, 14:11   #4
getter77
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Congrats on another big release and that's a really excellent plan on the class playtesting to better shore up the future, immediate and otherwise!
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Old September 13, 2016, 17:26   #5
krazyhades
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Cool, I'm looking forward to trying out the new version! Thanks Chris! I have a minor bug report at the bottom of my post, after my musings/comments on this new version.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chris View Post
[1] Confusing Lights has been toned down. Seriously, that was crazy before
Yes it was pretty insane. I hope it still has some real use in the late game. Heck, Chaos Warriors don't get their class power of it until 40, which feels (or at least, felt) terrible when they already had multiple copies of the staff by then. I'm interested to see how balancing the power level ranges for spawned devices continues.

Quote:
[2] OK, it was a bit too easy to win with devices, so I made Rockets come slightly later and have higher casting costs. Tiamat got a new reward to celebrate this change.
As far as I could tell, devices were primarily the fallback option for combos with decent device skill for which melee was too risky. It was already a real pain in the ass grinding out enough -Rockets for the J. On the better side, I hope that this means that late-midgame isn't trivialized by some wands, which I imagine is the main thing you were going after (and I totally agree with), but I also fear this change will mostly just require even MORE tedium grinding for -Rockets for the big J on combos that can't stand toe to toe with it. We'll all have to see how it plays out, of course, but I think it may contribute to making some combos (like, say, your Scout winner, which IIRC you tried because...I was frustrated with my scout attempts) just take longer to win.

The issue of tedium/grinding versus gameplay is a serious issue in all *bands, and PosChengband especially, where the design is such that many attempts at balance work by making characters take more time to win and therefore introducing more opportunities for a misstep or bad situation (xp penalties instead of accepting easy vs strong races a la Sil; making rockets rarer to nerf devices; needing to find enough ammo on non-Create-Ammo shooter classes; needing to get one of a tiny list of Worthwile Endgame Weapons on various weapon-restricted classes)

Quote:
[3] Grow Mold no longer spams Death molds.
Heh, well that was cute and still is a relevant ability. Probably a good change.
Quote:
[4] Big change to Archery multipliers and ranges.
Wow that's a major change. No other comments until we see how it plays. It is worth noting that players have been strongly advising people who want to play shooter classes to only play Archer, as playing without Create Ammo involves a lot of tedium.

Quote:
[5] The Birth Autoroller is now a bit more generous. You *can* do two 17s if you are greedy. Or 3 16s. Or 16, 16, 15, 15 even ...
Hmm interesting. I look forward to seeing how this plays. The Autoroller rejecting a new player's stats, and generally just being incredibly confusing to new players while also being one of the first things they have to deal with, has been a real problem when I've been introducing new players (and I've introduced probably on the order of 50-100 new players by now) to the game. Almost every one of them ends up asking, confused, for help at the autoroller screen, and I can only imagine a number of first timers close the game there before even getting to spawn. The autoroller changes have been going in a decent direction, though it's still pretty arcane I expect this will lead to fewer players accidentally accepting a random-stats-with-no-thresholds-because-the-roller-decided-screw-your-expectations.

Quote:
[7] Jewelry drops from dungeon guardians, quest rewards and DROP_GREAT are no longer insulting in the early game. For example, one of my players got a Barbarian Talisman with -2 Int and nothing else! No more!!
YES! On four different Sorcerer attempts I got a Ring of Protection [+1] with no other powers out of the early townquests. I'm looking forward to this change!
Quote:
[8] no_wilderness: Playing with this option means you forgo stat gains from dungeon guardians. To compensate, you will gain a chosen stat for each random quest completed (i.e. DL6, DL12, DL24 etc quests in Angband)
Ooh, I expect elliptic (the most prolific of the no_wilderness players) may like this. Should make NewLife prep less painful for no_wilderness, though you can't protect Angband quests for later like you can the normal dungeon guardians of wilderness mode.


As for the various class and balance changes, I look forward to trying them out!


I've also got a minor BUG REPORT that's not so exciting, but worth a mention: Getting a monster stuck in a burglary-realm (or other player-created) trap (pit trap?) in the Telmora Arena is not yet handled, so you can get stuck in there permanently once the monster disappears.

Thank you for the work and love on this game, chris! I'm getting excited to open it up again.

Last edited by krazyhades; September 13, 2016 at 17:44.
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Old September 14, 2016, 23:15   #6
jevansau
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Thanks again for the work on this variant. I've returned to try it out after a few years, and I'm impressed.
I have tried a couple of monster characters, both created under 5.0.0 and one moved to 5.0.1, and I don't seem to be getting the random quests. What should I look for as the cause of this?
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Old September 14, 2016, 23:35   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chris View Post
Class Playtesting Changes:
[1] Samurai and Mystics no longer automatically concentrate to charge their power. It's annoying to do this by hand, but you don't always want or need the supercharge.
What? Why on earth would you do this? 99.99% of the time, resting up isn't strongly turn sensitive. And it's better and far more convenient under these circumstances to have the supercharge.
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Old September 17, 2016, 01:29   #8
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Thanks for the release! Looking forward to 5.0.2
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Old September 25, 2016, 21:57   #9
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Enjoying the new version. 2 quick comments: reflection on my amulet didn't test id. The graveyard guardian was friendly this run.

Edit: & the anti-magic cave guardian was pretty easy. It sat on the steps while I device blasted it

Last edited by wobbly; September 25, 2016 at 22:06.
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Old September 26, 2016, 16:32   #10
chris
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A quick update, mostly addressing recent posts on the forums, is available in the usual spot (5.0.2).

Bug Fixes:
[1] Last release had a tweak to fix early jewelry drops for Quest Rewards and Dungeon Guardians. Unfortunately, there was a bug in this code making late jewelry drops average from DROP_GREAT monsters. Hopefully, this release comes quick enough so that no one but myself was affected by this!

Forum Comments:
[1] I relented even further regarding jewelry, making rings of combat a little better in the early game. Azog, the guardian of the Orc Caves, now drops a ring of combat.

[2] I fixed the auto-roller display code during player birth. There seemed to be some confusion regarding the UI here ... This is not a point based buy in system for starting stats. Rather, it is the same old auto-roller the game has always had, but rather than forcing the player to guess what starting stats have a chance of working, the UI now tells the user when they are asking for too much. If the display is green, you should get your request. If orange, then you are being greedy, but it is still possible (Hey, you might get lucky). If red, then there is no chance for success. If black, then you are being too conservative! (Internally, I added scoring for other purposes, but this need not concern the player.)

[3] Mimics now get a saving throw during Dispel Magic in order to maintain their current form.

[4] Morgul weapons are now more rare (Rarity changed from 6 to 16).

[5] I tried to address the "out of range splash" exploit on dungeon guardians. Of course, this offers new opportunities for dealing with these guys ... I'm sure you'll figure them out. (BTW, Hengband tried to address this exploit, but their redress only works if the monster has summoning, teleportation, or healing. Unfortunately, none of the guardians have this.)

[6] Minor: Left handed monks can now assume postures while using a shield.

[7] Hallucination no longer displays the monster list at all.

[8] Object Lore: Fixed learning the OF_WARNING and OF_REFLECT flags.

Other Changes:
[1] Monster Lore: The game now reports actual observed spell frequencies rather than the funny guess code. Basically, we keep track of the number of turns a monster cast a spell as well as the number of turns it moved or attacked (while in LoS where it could have cast). If you probe or use easy_lore, than you will see the true frequency as set in r_info, but I prefer to have a record of my actual experiences for the current game.

[2] Egos: IGNORE_ACID has been adjusted on a few types. High level egos, to be competitive, need this flag (e.g. Helmets of Valkyrie) while a few low level types don't deserve it (e.g. Cloaks of Electricity). Some mage like egos now grant mage resistances (confusion and blindness).

[3] Wilderness: Some monsters can now climb in the mountains, and don't need levitation to chase the player. (Basically, I think the Wilderness Mountains are scummable, so I'm trying to address this.)

[4] Beholders have been redesigned a bit. Their melee attacks are non-physical, being just a gaze, so Str and Dex no longer offer bonuses to hit and damage and they never gain critical blows (You aren't bashing things with your eyeballs, after all!). Blows are gained by level (slight boost from Int) like a monk. Finally, the Beholder can "melee at a distance", gazing at nearby foes that are not necessarily adjacent. The range is short, but this change is quite powerful. They lose many of their early level spells (Paralyze, Confuse, Cause Wounds, etc) to compensate. They no longer start with objects on birth and now have some early detection spells.

[5] Monsters with a max level now gradually become less and less common, rather than suddenly cutting off at a specific level (Every 10 levels, their rarity doubles).
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