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Old April 11, 2012, 16:54   #1
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Mage Spells

I tried out V4, and I have to say I'm impressed. It looks very nice and the play is interesting too. But I did have one question: Is someone going to rework the mage spells? I've thought they needed to be completely redone for a long time...

I don't know how feasable it owuld be, but the spells in NPPAngband have some very interesting effects. There's a wide variety of attack spells both in shape of effect, damage type (fire/ice/etc), as well as damage dice. It's one of the things I like best about NPPAngband, and I'd recommend whomever is balacing mage spells take a look there for some ideas...

Thanks for your time. Roguelike games have been a favorite of mine since I played their predecessor Moria on a VAX/VMS system in the late 80s. Angband is still one of my favorite games...
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Old April 11, 2012, 17:11   #2
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The general rule for this kind of thing is, if you want to see it done, try doing it yourself, and if everyone likes it then it'll go into the official version.

Mage spells have been more or less untouched since the first version of the game. The two big changes I remember are 1) removing Globe of Invulnerability (years ago), and 2) reducing the costs of damage spells (within the last year or two). Otherwise, access to some spells for different classes has been tweaked, as has the efficacy of some of the detection spells, but that's about it.

I think most people don't feel that the spell list is broken, so why change it?
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Old April 11, 2012, 17:57   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
The general rule for this kind of thing is, if you want to see it done, try doing it yourself, and if everyone likes it then it'll go into the official version.

Mage spells have been more or less untouched since the first version of the game. The two big changes I remember are 1) removing Globe of Invulnerability (years ago), and 2) reducing the costs of damage spells (within the last year or two). Otherwise, access to some spells for different classes has been tweaked, as has the efficacy of some of the detection spells, but that's about it.

I think most people don't feel that the spell list is broken, so why change it?
I don't think I agree with this. I think most people feel that the spell list is idiosyncratic and dated, and would love to see it improved. But it's a big job, and very few people have the kind of spare time required to take it on. Those of us who do are all focused on other things which seem to us slightly more urgent.

But there have been a lot of ideas for improving both spell realms, consolidating some spells and differentiating others. The (2) referred to above was a comprehensive analysis of mana cost per point of damage, which overturned a longstanding problem of magic missile being the most mana-efficient spell for the entire game ...

I'd be happy to assist anyone who wanted to have a go at this. (EDIT: to rearrange existing spells, that is - adding new spells would make much more sense after the effects refactor is done - and would give me a nice incentive to do it!)
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Old April 13, 2012, 11:38   #4
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NPP and Steam both are very interesting when it comes to spells. Anyone doing this might want to look into those.
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Old April 16, 2012, 02:08   #5
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Prayers need to be updated too. Annihilation SP cost is realy bad, and lots of spells are useless (remove curse, scare monster, sanctuary, cure serious/critical/mortal, turn undead, etc)
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Old April 16, 2012, 13:51   #6
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Originally Posted by Cold_Heart View Post
Prayers need to be updated too. Annihilation SP cost is realy bad, and lots of spells are useless (remove curse, scare monster, sanctuary, cure serious/critical/mortal, turn undead, etc)
remove_curse will be out in 3.4.

I'd also love to fix some of the other spells, but it's actually easier said than done. I've played a version where annihilation damage from the spell was competitive with melee (and reasonably priced.) and the priest becomes the most overpowered character around. They already have a great endgame, so giving them a strong attacking spell also is problematic.

The way to currently look at the priest spells is that since you don't get to choose your spells, you may sometimes get the crappy spell instead of the one you want. This isn't great by any means, but unless we can get someone to do a concerted revamping effort, v4 would be a great place to test it out.
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Old April 16, 2012, 21:18   #7
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One thing that could easily be done, is to really randomise the priest spells by learning any spell available at the learning level. This removes the formulated way of playing a priest, get to level 7 then wait until level 9 to get "orb of draining"
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Old April 16, 2012, 21:27   #8
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So basically priests would theoretically have access to any spell that they are of the appropriate level to cast, and wouldn't need spellbooks any more? Bookless spellcasting is an extremely powerful ability. But not having Orb available makes priests much harder to play, since their melee is fairly pitiful and their ranged combat is even worse.

Or would you get any of the spells available in the books you own? In which case you'd just drop/sell/destroy the books that don't have the spell you want and then get them back after studying.

Or would you learn a spell at random but require the book to cast it still? In which case, how would you handle dungeon spellbooks? Am I to learn a spell that I won't be able to cast for another 40 character levels because the spellbook doesn't drop?
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Old April 16, 2012, 21:39   #9
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I was thinkiing of the last option. Harsh but with a reduce spell list it would be workable.
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Old April 16, 2012, 21:50   #10
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I was thinkiing of the last option. Harsh but with a reduce spell list it would be workable.
Yeah, but if you fix the spell list, presumably you've fixed it well enough that the formulaic problems regarding portal and orb have gone away.

If you were desperate for an easy fix, change it so that you can learn any spell in the book (even ones you can't cast). As Derakon said though, priests get a lot harder without orb, so this change needs some dedicated playtesting.
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