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Old September 19, 2015, 06:31   #11
Estie
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What about this:

Make trap detection rare, like *destruction*. That way, the only way to find them in the early game is by stumbling on them. Staves of trap detection can be carried and used in vaults. The spell gets removed from store books, possibly put in Mord´s.

The only change to traps I would like to see in that case is the removal of trap door, at least outside vaults. It breaks the pattern of "detect by triggering, disarm later".

Edit: I was assuming no more searching, either. However, thinking more about it, retaining searching would work as well; basically, youd search only when you knew exactly where the trap is (knowledge of vault layout).

Last edited by Estie; September 19, 2015 at 06:41.
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Old September 19, 2015, 09:41   #12
Carnivean
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Originally Posted by Nick View Post
[*]Magic disarm as it is goes completely, replaced by a safe passage spell. This could work on the traps (as a beam, probably?) or on the player. If on the traps it could be either duration based or "good for one use". This feels like a priest spell if on the player, a mage spell if on the traps.
I would be totally against any system that requires mages to manually deal with traps. They've spent their lives trying to learn to do everything with magic instead of their hands. Avoiding the problem is a good substitute for disarming it, but you could also have a temporary magic jam on the trap that prevents it triggering.

Priests would be requesting their deity gives them a temporary increase in their skill to disarm or avoid the trap, I feel.
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Old September 19, 2015, 10:09   #13
mushroom patch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
Angband is a game where functionally a player never has to take risks.
I was briefly excited to see this sentence. Yes! Someone gets it! I thought...

And then:

Quote:
Descend into a dark room of hounds? Randomly dicked over. Have your staff of Desctruction burned by an off screen fire vortex? Randomly dicked over. Have that stat potion crushed by an elemental in a vault? Randomly dicked over. Nexus stat swap? Randomly dicked over (and more like the hand of god crushing you than any trap.)

Last edited by mushroom patch; September 19, 2015 at 10:34.
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Old September 19, 2015, 14:19   #14
fizzix
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mushroom patch View Post
I was briefly excited to see this sentence. Yes! Someone gets it! I thought...

And then:
All of those can be avoided provided you're willing to play extremely safely. You can, for example, never put yourself in range of a fire or nexus breath.

I do find it odd that Derakon is annoyed by traps screwing a player but hasn't campaigned to remove nexus stat swap, which is a far worse random dicking over (and one that I've argued against many times)
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Old September 19, 2015, 16:26   #15
Derakon
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Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
All of those can be avoided provided you're willing to play extremely safely. You can, for example, never put yourself in range of a fire or nexus breath.

I do find it odd that Derakon is annoyed by traps screwing a player but hasn't campaigned to remove nexus stat swap, which is a far worse random dicking over (and one that I've argued against many times)
What? Nexus stat swap is pretty dumb, in its current incarnation anyway. The version I've campaigned for was turning it into a +1/-1 effect (or maybe +3/-3, you get the idea). I've said this numerous times.

As far as traps are concerned, the big problem I have with hidden traps is that I don't see how they make the game more interesting. Especially since it's incredibly unlikely for a trap to be relevant at the same time that you're engaged in a serious fight.

Your examples of other ways the game randomly dicks players over are also mostly all seen as negatives by the player base, by the way. In my opinion, the randomness of the game should be in setting up interesting permutations of problems for the player to solve, so to speak. Obviously it's very difficult to set up a random scenario generator that creates interesting scenarios without sometimes creating unfair ones, but that doesn't mean we shouldn't try.

Let's turn this around a bit: why are you so set on keeping hidden traps?
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Old September 19, 2015, 16:43   #16
mushroom patch
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All of those can be avoided provided you're willing to play extremely safely. You can, for example, never put yourself in range of a fire or nexus breath.
Ah, good. Comment withdrawn.

In general, it would be better for the game to allow players to be somewhat less careful but more able to back themselves into a corner with few outs through a series of missteps. As it stands, playing very carefully removes all risk, essentially.
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Old September 19, 2015, 17:30   #17
Mikko Lehtinen
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Hi!

Halls of Mist only has traps in vaults, in rooms with closets (green #), and near the starting places of monsters with trapping skill.

I find the closet rooms most fun. In those rooms, there are *lots* of hidden traps, plus probably something valuable to be found in the closets.

You may want to read a Scroll of Protection from Traps or to increase your Wisdom (-> Perception) somehow before entering. You search nearby squares automatically for traps, with only one skill roll allowed per trap.

Trying to minimize the squares you walk through in a trapped room is a fun little puzzle.

(I'm going to release the next version of Halls of Mist soon. It's ready for the launch, except that the game crashes in Windows 8... I want to test the build with Windows 10 before I release.)
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Old September 19, 2015, 18:38   #18
Grotug
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Originally Posted by fizzix View Post
@Derakon

I still don't agree. Angband is a game where functionally a player never has to take risks. This is why the "random dicking over of the player" as you put it is relevant.

I'll also note that "random dicking over of the player" is pretty much a given in roguelikes and it already exists at all levels of the game. Descend into a dark room of hounds? Randomly dicked over. Have your staff of Desctruction burned by an off screen fire vortex? Randomly dicked over. Have that stat potion crushed by an elemental in a vault? Randomly dicked over. Nexus stat swap? Randomly dicked over (and more like the hand of god crushing you than any trap.)

I'm not sure at all why we're trying to eliminate these things. We're playing a roguelike after all, presumably we want a challenge based off of random elements.
I've been mulling over the trap issue and think that I agree with Fizzix; not sure why we are trying to remove these things, either. I think the current trap system is fine and any new one will reveal in time that the current one is actually quite good. Not seeing traps is kind of how traps are and need to be; this creates some suspense and the sense of ever-present danger. If you can become able to detect all traps all the time, well, it does come at the cost of some resource, whether be it precious mana or a precious inventory slot. Maybe the current trap system could be tweaked slightly or something, but I'm not sure that down the road an overhaul of traps will be perceived as an improvement, or that there aren't more interesting areas of the game that could be improved (I love the idea of adding terrain such as lava pools, chasms, boogie bogs [like the one Gollum guides Frodo and Sam through, with all manner of mysterious spooks in it]).

One possibility is to leave the traps as they are, but each time @ encounters a certain kind of trap his ability to avoid it/disarm it increases, until said trap no longer becomes an issue. This would require new, more devious traps being added to the game as you descend deeper in the dungeons. For example, you wouldn't encounter the Temple of Doom crushing ceiling trap until, say, DL30 or so. But eventually, you may get to where traps no longer pose an issue; which seems fine if you are CL50 and ready to take on M.

I've been thinking a lot about Indiana Jones (in my mind a classic go-to for how traps quintessentially operate) and, I assume, an inspiration for a lot of the elements of D&D and Roguelikes (why else can @ wield a whip?).

If we think of Indiana as @, I guess he'd be a Rogue class with a very high perception, but think of his companions who are blundering and triggering traps all the time. Indy is aware of the traps because of his experience as an adventurous archaeologist (read: Rogue), but his companions do not detect the traps, which are invisible to them, and so constantly trigger them. So the films provide us with both scenarios, novice @s or non-Rogue @s exploring the dungeon and triggering invisible traps and experienced @s/Rogues aware of the traps, but still at times triggering them!

Indiana is aware of the trap in the beginning of Raiders where he needs to replace the artifact on the pedestal with something of the same weight so that when he takes the artifact it won't trigger a trap. So we see him sifting sand through his hands as he tries to guess at how heavy he thinks the artifact is. Of course he gets it wrong and he triggers multiple traps: (falling ceiling, firing darts, closing door-slabs of granite). He doesn't know what the traps that he triggers are until the traps have been activated. Of course, he has high DEX and is wearing the Leather Jacket of Hollywood and the Fedora of Indiana Jones so none of the darts hurt him. Indy, immediately after having escaped the pedestal trap and still in a frantic/adrenaline state, inadvertently steps on a floor trigger that unleashes a giant boulder that chases after him.

I guess I'm just trying to get some brainstorming going regarding what good traps are, and for me Indiana Jones is the best source for ideas/inspiration on the topic. Classically: you have poison darts that fire when searching the area for something (or stupid curiosity as is more precisely what happens in the films). Of course, it's a bit more tricky to have subtle cues for where a trap is (as in the films) in a simple ascii map.

In Temple of Doom we have some more fun/good traps. The main bad guy disappears into a trap door. You could have, instead of monsters teleporting away: "Saruman disappears into a trap door!" There's the ever-memorable crushing spiked ceiling (could have a random number of turns (say 15-25 turns) before the ceiling starts crushing you with a little turn counter counting down each time you take a turn as you try to figure out the best way to stop the trap (or escape the room), which would probably involve searching the walls or pillars in the room for a release lever "You found a release lever! The spiked ceiling retreats." or "You fell into a trap! You sink through the floor" or "You found a secret door!" Although in the film Indy requires the help of another person to release the trap.

There's a scene in Temple where a bad guy, hiding camouflaged on the wall, suddenly appears and attacks Indy. Could have monsters that are hiding invisible on the wall and then suddenly they become visible as they approach @ from the wall. (kinda similar to Lurker/Trapper but they are visible once they leave the wall).

You could have some open doors that look normal but when you walk through them they close behind you and are granite once they close (closing door-slab of granite). A trap that you could make only occur with doorways that are open doors, say 3% or 5% of the time. Would be used in conjunction with the crushing spiked ceiling trap, but could also just trigger on its own, making retracing your steps difficult if you don't have a means to dig through granite. So, the crushing trap might occur 1% of the time and a door that just closes as a granite slab coming down would occur 5% of the time. You'd eventually learn that doorways where the door is already open could be such a trap, and then you'd have to decide whether or not you'd want to take the risk of passing through the doorway. Since Angband is a top down 2D game, the trap could be seen triggering in-game as granite walls filling in the room, so the room becomes smaller, and the granite walls become thicker (the room could fill in from one wall (or two walls if it was a particularly diabolical DL98 floor and ceiling crusher).

In one of the Mummy movies there is a trap door that deals damage and drops you into a special room. You could have such a trap door inside of a crushing ceiling trap. Multiple combos of traps in this fashion keep the traps fresh, as sometimes to get out of the crushing ceiling room you'll have to find a lever to stop the trap and reset the room, or a secret door to leave the room, but sometimes the only way out is to fall into another trap in the room, either a trap door that takes you to another level or a trap door that drops you into a special room.

In terms of game mechanics, the special room would be its own dungeon level (so if you look at the map all you see is the special room and magic mapping would only reveal the exit out of the special room, which could be a hidden door that mechanically functions like teleport one level up (but back to the level you were on exactly as it was, NOT a random generated level, [not sure if this would be programmably problematic?)].

So if you were on DL47 when you fell into the secret room The "teleport level" secret door out of the secret room would take you to the other side of the crushing ceiling trap (where you were ostensibly trying to get to when you became trapped inside of the room with a crushing ceiling), but, mechanically, the special room would be located on a "different" dungeon level (so instead of falling through the floor to the next lower down dungeon level, you are falling through the floor into a special room, so instead of it saying DL48, it'd say Special Room, and the door out of the special room would actually be a teleport (but visually a secret door on the map) that would teleport you onto the other side of the crushing ceiling trap room (so back up to the DL48 you were on, exactly as it was).

Summary of trap types, what others can we think of?
  • Ranged dart trap
  • Stat loss dart
  • Crushing ceiling trap
  • Multiple kinds of Trap doors (for @ and monster escapes)
  • Spiked pit
  • Miasma (gas trap)
  • Ambush monster trap


Some links:

http://www.dandwiki.com/wiki/SRD:Traps#Magic_Trap

From films:
The Boulder trap: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Pr-8AP0To4k
The disappearing trap door: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xuh8nrhAqhQ
The leap of faith "trap": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5VjZ1ORS8Y#t=8s
Pillars, no floor, enviro: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7zwPRGbmrow#t=50s

Some search results including Minecraft Indy traps:
https://www.youtube.com/results?sear...na+jones+traps

Last edited by Grotug; September 19, 2015 at 18:46.
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Old September 20, 2015, 04:01   #19
mushroom patch
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The drawbacks of shouting down people who say flavor should not be an important consideration in game design...
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Old September 21, 2015, 07:16   #20
Tarrasque
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The drawbacks of shouting down people who say flavor should not be an important consideration in game design...
Flavor doesn't have to detract from gameplay. That said, If I had to choose I'd pick gameplay. Bad gameplay makes it harder to enjoy flavor anyway.

Sil's magic system where you turn spells "on or off" is pretty neat.

Detection spells could be changed to have a duration. If the radius was reduced on detect traps the duration could be pretty long even without changing the total area detected. You wouldn't reach the edge of the detection zone as quickly when going in one direction. Detect monsters could last a short time and keep the same radius. This might work well if the rod of probing was changed to work on monsters out of your LoS, but only one at a time. I like filling monster memory. I don't feel like I'm required to do it but I can if I want. It's like pokémon.

Frustration or tedium for no reason, or Unavoidable and unforeseeable killing or crippling of a character is bad, but I like having to deal with unfavorable events. In Angband, ignoring death or loss of an artifact, nearly all setbacks are temporary. Boredom is risky, but in-game the more tediously and carefully you play (rest, detect monsters, repeat, grind at DLevel 1 to CLevel 50) the less risk you're in at any one moment.

Working through difficult situations can be fun. As an extreme example that I think everyone would agree on, keeping hunger the same but moving satisfy hunger to the first spellbook and reducing the SP cost to 1 would be awful, but so would adding a super rare undetectable monster that hits for 5000 damage.
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