Testing build

Sep 25, 2:15 pm
#1
red_kangaroo's avatar
goblin prince


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I'm working on some new items and I'd like some feedback from you, especially for balance concerns and errors I might have made. GitHub fork is here.

Of the new items added, there are several new magical items to increase the diversity, so that the player has choices what kind of bonus he wants from each of his equipment slots, plus there are some new aritfacts, especially non-weapon ones, because we have way too few non-weapon artifacts.

New helmets include a helm of indomitable will, which increases willpower - not useful now, but hopefully willpower will have uses in the future, and in the meantime the helm is very rare and quite good even without the magical bonus.

Helm of telepathy (ESP) and teleportation (teleportitis) - give the player options to pick from. I don't believe helm of telepathy makes amuelt of ESP obsolete - all magical helms are rare, so you're more likely to ahve the amulet than the helm, and if you wish for one - go for it, that's exactly the kind of choices I would like to see. Helm of teleporation is of course most useful with ring of telecontrol.

And an artifact radiant helm of Macula. It gives enchantment to perception and infravision.

New belts include a belt of protection, which is harder, heavier and generated with better materials than normal belts. I'm thinking about making it indestructible, but I'm not sure about this. However, I want some belts that could conceivably be used instead of belt of levitation, so what do you think?

Then two atribute bonus granting belts - belt of giant strength and thief's girdle. Inspired by CLIVAN, those give bonuses to AStr/LStr for giant strength and Dex/Agi for thief's. However, they are very, very rare and only give +1 attribute per +2 enchanment, so they are actually not more efficient than the respecitve gloves or boots. They can of course be used to stack bonuses, or used with different gloves/boots for overall bonuses, whichever the player prefers. I actually think those might work very nice as an alternative to use or wish for instead of belt of levitation.

Amulets were also changed a bit - amulet of elemental protection had its resistance bonuses halved. It is now on par with resistance rings, still making it powerful (three rings combined), but not so incredibly overpowered as it was before. Please try it out and tell me if you feel the same way.

Amulet of unbreathing grants gas immunity, to prevent those pesky mustard clouds from trapping you.

Then two amulets were added that are temporary - both are made from spoilable materials and cannot be material changed, thus making them powerful but temporary boon for the player. Amulet of speed grants haste, while amulet of phasing grants ethereal. Yes, amulet of phasing is powerful, but it was given rather short spoil time, plus it is not generated normally and can only be wished for - it might be good to wish for before some major battle or to quickly run through a floor, if you ahve the wish to spare, but it will hopefully not break the game. Shadow veil is still vastly superior, being a permanent source of ethereal.

Ring of light is a small novelty item - it glows! I also ported sol stones from CLIVAN, as they are IMHO very interesting item.

Two artifact whields from CLIVAN weer added - now I hope some of you who find them will actually use shields. Blessed shield of the Phoenix grants life saved while wielded - just don't haev your arm chopped off before it can save your life. Aegis is then an unbreakable shield with some small resistance bonuses, making it rather nice is you lack some resistance rings.

Several new cloaks were added, two of them artifacts:

Werewolf fur cloak is based on CLIVAN, giving lycanthropy.

Mantle of Al-Khan gives several nice powers - it gives uncontrolled teleport and both enchantment to endurance and invisibility, so it will increase danger level like crazy. Plus it cannot be material changed from expensive fabric - the rewards are worth it, but the risk is high.

Cloak of flying and quickness is based on suggestions on forums by Ischaldirh. Cloak of flying can only be wished, it's a possible substitute for belt of levitation, to let you decide which slot to use for levitation. Also it's red. Cloak of quickness affects agility, but only gives +1 Agi per two enchantments.

Cloak of protection is a heavy armor special claok, a metal cloak with low penalty to Dex and Agi. Still very heavy, so the choice between resistance cloak made of light material or high-AV cloak of heavy material makes the player think.

Finally, one artifact weapon was added - the mage staff named Y'yter Durr. It give you both polymorph and polymorph control - IMHO, this will lead to cool and rather unusual gameplay. Try for yourself.

I also changes how artifacts work - they no longer can be wished nor material changed. Artifacts should be special items, legendary and ancient. How comes you can easily change them with mortal magic, transmuting them without any difficulty? And they are all already powerful enough with their original materials, no need to make them overpowered by changing them into better materials. As for no wishing,
it allows to easily gain copies of the same artifact, while artifacts already were not cloneable. You shouldn't have multiples, plus no wishing makes them more special and the player will treasure them more
when he can only find the artifacts and cannot wish for his favourites every game. With more artifacts added, this does not make the game poorer in artifacts, only makes artifacts an unpredictable bonus to your run. What do you think?

I will attack a compiled game with the changes - it works well on Linux, but I unfortunatelly cannot try it out on Windows right now, so hopefully it will also work.

Thanks!
Sep 26, 1:11 am
#2
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As far as the +1 stat per 2 enchantment goes, considering you can only reliably enchant up to 5 means people will naturally pick the gloves and boots every time, especially since there are no better alternatives for hands and feet at present. So far as special belts are concerned, I believe them being utility-only was intentional and is probably the better way to add more belts. Much like carrying increases your carrying limit without increasing leg strength, there are ways to implement various effects without directly increasing stats.
Sep 26, 2:23 am
#3
red_kangaroo's avatar
goblin prince


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chaostrom wrote
As far as the +1 stat per 2 enchantment goes, considering you can only reliably enchant up to 5 means people will naturally pick the gloves and boots every time, especially since there are no better alternatives for hands and feet at present.

The belt, however, give +1 to two attributes - belt of giant strength to both Astr and LStr, while thief's girdle to both Dex and Agi. That's why it's only +1 per +2 - it's actually same bonus you gain from the gloves and boots and otherwise it would be too good, IMHO. While people will use gloves and boots, you still can use both gauntlets of strength and thief's girdle to boost all stats, or stack gauntlets of strength and belt of giant strength for bigger bonuses.
Sep 26, 3:32 am
#4
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I wasn't just talking about enchanting, but also equipment choice. Why wear and enchant a belt that needs +2 enchantments for any additional benefit when belts are amongst the least important pieces of armour? Let's break it down into a simple list.

1. Stat boosting gloves and boots are already the go-to-choice because there are no better alternatives for hands and feet.
2. Loss of any limb means instant loss of half those stats. Obviously they take priority over belts (see points 3 & 4).
3. Enchantments boost AV as well.
4. Disregarding additional attributes, belts are the least important piece of armour. The bulk of AV for your groin will come from torso armour and cloak.
5. The fact that you can only enchant reliably up to 5, yet these only increase stats for 2 means that, unless they're swimming in enchant scrolls, they'll often leave the belts at +4 or +6 for a minor +2/3 to stats, hardly a game changer.
6. They'll be inferior to the same number of enchants on equivalent gloves/boots for the same number of enchantments.

I get where you're going with this, and in fact I am all for having a greater variety of equipment choices, but given these points why would you pick one of these when you can have levitation?
Sep 26, 10:12 am
#5
Joined: Sep 22, 2008
Posts: 612
chaostrom wrote
I get where you're going with this, and in fact I am all for having a greater variety of equipment choices, but given these points why would you pick one of these when you can have levitation?

Levitation does not provide straight up combat effectiveness like stat boosts do, even if negligible. I'm personally more worried that stat belts will generate unnecessary micromanagement via belt swapping for fights vs safe exploration.

Regarding the rest of the changes:
Willpower helmet fits in with INT, WIS & PER well enough if and when willpower is made more useful. Until then, misleading players with a useless effect feels rather awkward. The ESP helmet could be neat! Currently the arguably optimal route is to go ESP amulet with a helmet brilliance for that juicy synergy, so providing a viable choice for the helmet is welcome. Teleportitis helmets are not going to be optimal by any means (random teleportation rarely occurs when needed), but could still be used instead of vanilla headgear with telecontrol. The helmet of Maclua is still another choice for the player even if I'd personally still prefer the INT helmet + ESP amulet.

The amulet additions are fine as is I feel. There isn't currently much competition for an AoLS for combat against visible foes and ESP for general use. One thing I do have to point out: I highly doubt any player will be able to find an amulet that's only wishable. Perishable amulets are an interesting idea, but they do need to be able to be found without spending wishes.

Rings of light would be great! Even if they're not really worth an equipment slot when light crystals exist, additional interesting permanent light sources would be lovely.

Artifact shields should provide some incentive to use shields in general, which can only be a good thing.

The mantle and lycanthrophy cloak are both likely way too risky to use and may end up being just a flavour item, which by itself isn't a bad thing.

Cloak of flight again is not really something a new player will be able to find out without outside sources, there should at least be a tiny chance of it spawning naturally.

The armor cloak should be a fine addition so long as the numbers are tuned well enough, exchanging the currently optimal elemental resistances for more armor should come with some drawback.

Y'yter Durr could be neat! I would likely end up just staying in human form since stat and skill gains do not transfer between polymorphs.

I'm not so sure about the artifact changes. Keeping the player from multiples of artifact weapons is might be fine (rip 2x Turox, you were the best), but denying material changes will simply mean some of them will be even less viable. Take Saal'Thul for example: invisibility is easy enough to come by from wands or rings for ordinary adamantine or valpurium short swords to be preferrable in every case. I don't think the change works flavour-wise either, if mortal magic scrolls of enchantment or repair can still be used.
Sep 27, 12:24 am
#6
Joined: Dec 3, 2007
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My point is not that levitation is better in fights, just that negligible stat boosts are not going to let these new items compete. Which is why I keep going over "utility". Rather than minimal strength boost, how about a damage multiplier? Instead of minor DEX/AGI, how about a crit multiplier? If the belt of carrying increases your weight limit without increasing leg strength surely such things are possible?
Sep 27, 10:47 am
#7
Joined: Dec 17, 2007
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unbreathing should negate the insta-death for drowning, if thats possible in the current setup.
Sep 28, 12:02 am
#8
Joined: Sep 22, 2008
Posts: 612
There is no competition between levitation and stat boosts, as they're both useful in two completely different circumstances. Minor stat boosts do not help the player with exploration like utility belts do and vice versa for combat, so it makes sense for the player to find a belt for both situations. Nothing forces a player to only choose one belt and ignore all of the others. Especially so when the levitation belt is practically guaranteed for most runs.

That being said, I do agree levitation and carrying both win out against stat boosts in how interesting the effects are. Having a number go up a bit is just dull, regardless of whether it's optimal for the situation or not.

Batman? wrote
unbreathing should negate the insta-death for drowning, if thats possible in the current setup.
By that note, unbreathing might also enable swimming / slowly walking across the sea floor.
Sep 28, 6:43 pm
#9
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JoKe wrote
By that note, unbreathing might also enable swimming / slowly walking across the sea floor.

Maybe the pc would benefit from a pair of swimming trunks?

Would unbreathing affect swimming and be like a gas mask status?
Sep 29, 12:55 am
#10
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So far as I know oxygen and breathing isn't even part of the code, but swimming is. There's no need to go around in a circle like that when you can simply give the PC some way of swimming.
Oct 1, 8:26 am
#11
red_kangaroo's avatar
goblin prince


Joined: Apr 2, 2014
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Thank you all for the replies!

Regarding stat belts, I see the concerns.

One edge the stat belts have is that they can be normally generated - I may try to increase their possibility to levels comparable with carrying. So maybe it won't be a competition of stat belt or levitation, but rather carrying or a stat belt.

While there is a guaranteed belt of levitation through the quest, I don't always go for it, especially if I don't feel strong enough early on, because after I clear the first part of GC, I don't feel especially pressing need for levitation to return back for it. So I would definitely pick even between carrying or a stat belt. Then again, I'm not particularly good or optimal player.

chaostrom wrote
Rather than minimal strength boost, how about a damage multiplier? Instead of minor DEX/AGI, how about a crit multiplier? If the belt of carrying increases your weight limit without increasing leg strength surely such things are possible?

It surely is possible, just not with my level of coding skill.

JoKe wrote
One thing I do have to point out: I highly doubt any player will be able to find an amulet that's only wishable. Perishable amulets are an interesting idea, but they do need to be able to be found without spending wishes.

Good point. I don't personally mind spoilers much, but I can make it rarely generated to give the palyer a chance to encounter it.

JoKe wrote
Cloak of flight again is not really something a new player will be able to find out without outside sources, there should at least be a tiny chance of it spawning naturally.

Here I would disagree with making it randomly generated, bacause there already is the belt quest for a source of levitation and sometimes randomly giving you permanent levitation without the quest would feel awkward, IMHO. I can, however, add some line of a dialogue to hint the player into the cloak's existence, and/or add a cloak of flying into the Attnamese treasury. Thus the player will see it exists and can consider wishing for it.

JoKe wrote
I'm not so sure about the artifact changes. Keeping the player from multiples of artifact weapons is might be fine (rip 2x Turox, you were the best), but denying material changes will simply mean some of them will be even less viable. Take Saal'Thul for example: invisibility is easy enough to come by from wands or rings for ordinary adamantine or valpurium short swords to be preferrable in every case. I don't think the change works flavour-wise either, if mortal magic scrolls of enchantment or repair can still be used.

I see. Maybe only some artifacts should be un-material-changeable? Enchanting and repairing is like when Narsil, Aragorn's broken sword from LotR, was reforged into Andúril - it did not fundamentally change the weapon. If Narsil was changed from elven steel into bread, though, that would be weird. But I will definitely think about this more.

Maybe Saal'Thul is underpowered in its current state? I think it's the only artifact that has the problem of not being really viable. Maybe it could be changed to adamant? Or have haste added as its effect? Do you feel any other artifacts are underpowered?

Batman? wrote
unbreathing should negate the insta-death for drowning, if thats possible in the current setup.

Now that amulet gives gas immunity. I'll see if I can add swimming as a status the amulet could also give, because there is no code support for not breathing on water floor - you simply die unless you can swim or fly.
Oct 3, 7:46 am
#12
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I am not sure if this is the same thread where wind/belt effects were being discussed, but I think if you are blown into a wall or object you should have some or all of the contents of your pack spilled across the floor. Same for a kick.
Oct 3, 11:23 am
#13
red_kangaroo's avatar
goblin prince


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Good news, everyone! Amulet of magic breath / unbreathing now also gives Swimming status, so you don't drown in water.

Cloak of flying was added to Cathedral treasury, so that the palyer knows they can wish for it. I'm leaving the cloak wish-only, not to devalue the belt quest.

I buffed AoGH a bit, bringing it about on par with chainmail - it's still a bit heavier and increases your danger level, but useable. Armor of great health was before nearly useless, as it was weak, heavy and with too high penalties (it had inelasticity penalty 50, while plate mail has only 20!).

I also added three new wood types - kauri, rata and sidgure. The first two are New Zealand woods lifted from CLIVAN, the last one is wood from a magical mango world-tree upon which Lunethia the elven city in the Dark forest rests. Their stats were a bit buffed to be better than ebony, sidgure is on par with iron (or slightly better, as it's lighter). This change is because wooden weapons are currently totally useless. Now you can harden your weapon enough to make it at least useable.

Spears and quarterstaffs can now be generated made of these three new woods. I've taken the material probability for the woods from comparable materials the weapons could already generate as, so don't fret, no power creep is going on - you're only more likely to find a wooden weapon you will want to use.

I also added rolling pins and frying pans for housewives - there were already graphics for them, so of course the housewives demanded to have them!

Batman? wrote
I am not sure if this is the same thread where wind/belt effects were being discussed, but I think if you are blown into a wall or object you should have some or all of the contents of your pack spilled across the floor. Same for a kick.

Wind effects would definitely be cool, but they are way beyond my level of skill. So don't expect them in this build.
Oct 4, 4:21 am
#14
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Just looked up mango wood, it looks very beautiful irl.
That's cool about the CLIVAN woods, I think I have a list of some of the other features I'd like to port over to the master dev branch. Just need to see if I can find it. There were also some features that I'd prefer never to see the light of day, basically anything that wasn't on the list.
Oct 5, 12:52 am
#15
red_kangaroo's avatar
goblin prince


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I added several magic weapons.

As discussed somewhere else, the zombie of Khaz-zadm now wields her own special axes instead of the boring valpurium battle axe. Much more interesting this way!

Chilling axes sometimes slow your target. Scythes of terror sometimes panic your target. Banshee sickles (based on old dev notes in Doc/Old) do additional sound damage as they scream at your target.

fejoa wrote
That's cool about the CLIVAN woods, I think I have a list of some of the other features I'd like to port over to the master dev branch. Just need to see if I can find it. There were also some features that I'd prefer never to see the light of day, basically anything that wasn't on the list.

I have several more item I would like to try to port, too. Specifically, I rather like scrolls of fireballs, even though they should be rare. Bone of Ullr also could be cool as there is no artifact wand yet, plus now it can give you swimming, like in the legend.

I'm also thinking about porting the celestial monograph of Solicitus (but not Solicitus himself). As the book can completely reset your standing with all gods (it makes you forget all gods and resets your relation with them to 0), I can see it having a nice niche use if you can find it.
Oct 6, 10:55 am
#16
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goblin prince


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Added ring of detection which rarely lets you detect any material while worn. Also added horns of confusion.

Some screenshots for you:
Oct 8, 1:21 pm
#17
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goblin prince


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Added a scroll of body switch.

This is an artifact-level scroll (more rare than scroll of wishing and unwishable) that lets you switch bodies with one adjacent creature. You must be able to tame the target creature to possess it - it runs the same check as a scroll of taming, then possesses the target if successful. Thus no switching with quest-relevant NPCs and no easy switching into end-game enemies, but if you happen to find this scroll and have high-enough stats, you can switch into you dream-form.

(Inspired by the roguelike Ragnarok/Valhalla where this scroll exist and lets you do cool tricks. )
Oct 8, 2:35 pm
#18
Joined: Dec 11, 2008
Posts: 1,752
red_kangaroo wrote
Thus no switching with quest-relevant NPCs and no easy switching into end-game enemies...

Doesn't this mean you'll be able to pull off the Diplomatic Immunity trick by bodysnatching a GC shop guard?
Oct 8, 3:42 pm
#19
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goblin prince


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4zb4 wrote
Doesn't this mean you'll be able to pull off the Diplomatic Immunity trick by bodysnatching a GC shop guard?

I'm not sure what do you mean? You could bodysnatch a GC shop guard, but you don't switch teams.
Oct 8, 5:27 pm
#20
Joined: Dec 11, 2008
Posts: 1,752
red_kangaroo wrote
You could bodysnatch a GC shop guard, but you don't switch teams.

Ah right. I thought the bodysnatching would work the same as the wizard mode possession mechanic, which would retain the team the possessed creature was on.

So does this scroll change the character to the player's team first (i.e. tame them) and then you take over their body?
The way I read it was that it used the same check as taming but instead of taming the character you just took control of them immediately.
Oct 9, 12:36 am
#21
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goblin prince


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4zb4 wrote
Ah right. I thought the bodysnatching would work the same as the wizard mode possession mechanic, which would retain the team the possessed creature was on.

So does this scroll change the character to the player's team first (i.e. tame them) and then you take over their body?
The way I read it was that it used the same check as taming but instead of taming the character you just took control of them immediately.

Oh, no no no! That would be way too OP! Bodyswapping into any MONSTER_TEAM creature would give you nigh-unlimited access to a huge army.

Yes, it runs a taming check, if successful tames the target creature, then swaps your minds. Thus you gain control of the creature and retain your old body as a new pet. (I decided it would be to clunky to force you to either drop everything before possession or fight your own old body.) You both are still on PLAYER_TEAM, though.

BTW, the code for this scroll on GitHub crashes, but I have a fixed and working one that I will upload shortly.
Oct 9, 4:18 am
#22
Joined: Dec 11, 2008
Posts: 1,752
red_kangaroo wrote
Oh, no no no! That would be way too OP! Bodyswapping into any MONSTER_TEAM creature would give you nigh-unlimited access to a huge army.

Durrrrrr me - I didn't even think of that part!
Well, the scroll working that way seems pretty neat to me even if it might not be useful for very much other than swapping to a guard or something for some quick stat boosts.

Of course you could also bodysnatch something like an eddy or floating eye to mess around but I don't think it'd be a good way to win the game.
Oct 9, 11:17 am
#23
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Switching teams would be a cool feature just to play with though, maybe for wizard mode?
Oct 9, 11:41 am
#24
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goblin prince


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capristo wrote
Switching teams would be a cool feature just to play with though, maybe for wizard mode?

You can do that in wizmode by possessing anyone of that team. But doing this in normal gameplay would be unbalanceable.
Oct 9, 12:11 pm
#25
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Ah yeah, duh, I forgot about that
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