Hybridization-encouraging monsters


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Post Thursday, 6th September 2018, 11:59

Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Inspired by summoners thread from GDD. Currently we have Abjuration, Silence, MP-draining to encourage hybridization.
I think summoner can be more enjoyable when it is not surrounded by 5+ summons of different kinds.
Something like this:
1) Monster with smite attack which becomes stronger (=read "deals more damage") the more enemies it has in view. You'd basically avoid using weak summons and things like spider bag, scroll of summoning etc. but summoning a hydra or Malign Gateway would still be a good idea.
2) Monster which gets stronger depending on number of different enemies in view. So if you insist on using summons, you are encouraged to select and use just a single type of summon, it is too dangerous to summon Monster Menagerie AND Lightning Spire AND Ice Beasts etc. For example, it can get ranged attack when there are 2 enemy kinds in view (including you), then the attack becomes smite targeted for 3 enemy kinds and deals double damage when there 4+ enemy kinds. Of course the monster is changed permanently, you cannot just reset the fight to remove those new abilities.
3) Monster might get abilities of killed enemy. If it kills Ice Beast, it gets rC+++. If it killed Lightning Spire, it gets rElec+++.
Of course the monster is changed permanently, you cannot just reset the fight to remove those new abilities.
4) Monster gets Iron Shot after killing 1 enemy, LCS after killing 2 enemies, Fire Storm after killing 3 enemies, resetting the fight does not reset the counter. Probably it should be a late game unique monster.
5) Melee monster which gets its damage increased the more MPs you spend with it in view, permanently also. For example, if you cast any 3rd level spell, monster damage is permanently increased by 3. Of course you can try to kill it with spells (summoning, conjurations, etc.), just don't be surprised if it will kill you in a few blows if it manages to attack you. A bit similar to hydra gambling when you have an axe or long sword.
6) Monster which swaps positions of enemies and slows both. So instead of looking at how your summons attack a pack, now you are attacked while being slowed so you are encouraged to be alone to avoid being slowed.

For all those cases we should provide clear messages to player, both in monster description and in game log, something like "This monster permanently gets Fireball if it kills an enemy, LCS if it kills 2 enemies and Fire Storm if it kills 3 enemies" and "Monster killed your Ice Beast and got ability to cast Iron Shot".
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Post Thursday, 6th September 2018, 21:27

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Why? I feel like there's a good balance between all character types.

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Post Thursday, 6th September 2018, 23:47

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

You don't need to do any of this wacky convoluted stuff in order to make a monster better against summoners. Just give the monster one or more area attacks. Fireball, damnation, even hydras' thing where they can switch targets, those all work fine.

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Post Friday, 7th September 2018, 00:45

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Hybridized (mage/melee) characters are almost always worse than ones that focus on a few skills, though, you just end up being bad at both relative to the counterfactual and most spells outside Translocations, Spectral Weapon, Statue Form and Regeneration have ~0 marginal return on XP investment outside early game (only for book backgrounds) unless you have Chei or are a Gnoll. You could always have enemies that are immune to melee, immune to magic, etc. but I don't think people would like that all that much... I remember when I started playing a lot of people said the best build type was a character using MDA with a suite of Charms, Phase Shift, etc. and such a build was fine I guess but it played like any other melee character. You could also, as you said, have enemies that cast Silence, have innate Aura of Abjuration, and so on.
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 7th September 2018, 04:09

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Tabstorm, yes, that's why there should be more monsters which cause troubles to pure builds. Monsters from OP are supposed to cause problems to "pure" summoners (think FeSu of Sif Muna) and the last ones to any "pure" casters.
Monsters for causing troubles to pure melee/ranged can be subject of another thread.
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Post Friday, 7th September 2018, 04:13

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Wahaha wrote:
Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Why? I feel like there's a good balance between all character types.
You may want to visit GDD where summoners are discussed right now.
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Post Friday, 7th September 2018, 04:17

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

duvessa wrote:You don't need to do any of this wacky convoluted stuff in order to make a monster better against summoners. Just give the monster one or more area attacks. Fireball, damnation, even hydras' thing where they can switch targets, those all work fine.
Probably we need a "pure" conjurations AoE attack which affects enemies only and which does not require walls like LRD. I don't like fireball/damnation as it is still beneficial to players when they send a pack of summons to fight a pack of monsters and just watch from behind.
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Post Friday, 7th September 2018, 06:01

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

It seems that this stuff is not about hybridization, it's about nerfing summoners. I am a bit confused.

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Post Friday, 7th September 2018, 06:18

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Magipi wrote:It seems that this stuff is not about hybridization, it's about nerfing summoners. I am a bit confused.
As you probably know pure summoners have 50% XP penalty because they are supposedly too strong. I am trying to find other ways to make them hybridize so that we can remove that annoying penalty.
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Post Monday, 10th September 2018, 02:45

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

VeryAngryFelid wrote:You may want to visit GDD where summoners are discussed right now.

I had read that thread. I think you want to make summoning weaker because it's too strong. If that's the case, just try to make it weaker. Encouraging hybrid summoners and making summoning weaker are things that can overlap but they're not directly related.

Summoning is not bad for a melee+summoning playstyle rn. It's not meta but it's workable. It's played by getting good melee and acceptable defenses in light armor and then training summoning to increase your damage and tactical options. By the way, spectral weapon should be removed from the game or changed to like lvl 6 or higher.

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Post Monday, 10th September 2018, 05:06

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Probably summons should share part of their received damage like spectral weapon does.
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Post Monday, 10th September 2018, 07:05

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Wahaha wrote:I had read that thread. I think you want to make summoning weaker because it's too strong. If that's the case, just try to make it weaker.


My understanding is that devs don't want to make it weaker, otherwise they would not introduce XP penalty instead of simply nerfing it. When Borgnjor's Vile Clutch was noticed to be too strong, they didn't add XP penalty to "balance" it, they simply made it weaker.
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Post Monday, 10th September 2018, 07:38

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Mechanics that make only summoning worse have a problem that most games don't use summoning, so the mechanics will be irrelevant or even confusing to players.

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Post Monday, 10th September 2018, 15:14

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

VeryAngryFelid wrote:
Wahaha wrote:I had read that thread. I think you want to make summoning weaker because it's too strong. If that's the case, just try to make it weaker.


My understanding is that devs don't want to make it weaker, otherwise they would not introduce XP penalty instead of simply nerfing it. When Borgnjor's Vile Clutch was noticed to be too strong, they didn't add XP penalty to "balance" it, they simply made it weaker.

Well, and they have made summons weaker a few times, the problem is and has always been in the weird edge 'abuse' cases, where someone sits on the sidelines, and spam summons and channels until everything's dead, for every fight. There's little risk, no challenge and a fair amount of tedium where every fight can be won by a simple thoughtless macro every time.

Part of the old problem with this was being able to summon an infinite amount of your strongest summon, so summons fighting out of LOS was removed, summon caps were added and durations shortened, but that wasn't enough, people would chain through all of the different summon spells once they acquired sufficient number, and so it made the magic no risk summon recipe more complicated, but the net result was that you could (eventually) still create enough summons to safely navigate any fight. So even though making summons weaker made spam abusing them *harder* and *more complicated* people, being what they are, still abused it. So the XP penalty was added to give players who properly evaluate challenge levels and take some risk a reward over players who take no risk, making optimal play no longer be as tedious and repetitive.

So now there's some push back against the XP penalty (because of course some people see the possibility of playing "all summons all the time" as exciting, not having done it themselves a bunch of times and having the experience of it being boring and kind of dumb)

The OP's suggestions are all of the form of weakening summoners (Note that these all are a flat out nerf to summoners, just plain making them worse, to put it another way, it simply discourages one from starting a summoner at all, as other types of killing tools aren't effected at all) and if the problem that the XP penalty was intended to address was that summoners would be too powerful without it, then this would probably be a good way to go. However, I don't think that's precisely the problem that's being addressed by the XP penalty, so I don't know that this presents a good alternate solution to the problem.

Personally I think the solution to the tedium is to further diversify the types of summons so they all have different strengths and weaknesses, a big slab of undifferentiated melee damage of varying levels can't present you as much variation in decision making, I'd personally like it if more summons were significantly weaker or stronger in some circumstances than others (Making the choice of summon spell more interesting) to reduce the tedium in summons without particularly strengthening or weakening them, if some summons are mostly inapplicable to a lot of fights, but are good in others, then choosing how and when to use your summons becomes less of a "plunk down the biggest slabs of meat that are available" type of fight, and if summoning as a type of combat becomes non tedious, then the XP penalty becomes irrelevant and can be removed.
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Post Monday, 10th September 2018, 16:45

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

When I read the thread title, I assumed it was going to be something that encouraged building different types of damage, rather than more anti-summoning.

Something like a monster which when hit by elemental damage, gets an elemental barrier which blocks/reduces all further elemental damage, until he's hit by a significant physical attack. And then gets a physical barrier, until hit by elemental damage, etc. There's issues with this, in that you don't want a berserker to be completely unable to kill them with melee, and that there's spells which deal physical/non-elemental damage (a conjurer having to switch between fireball and Iskenderun's mystic blast or iron shot isn't really hybridizing). But I think there's still room for a workable design - you'd probably want to make the barrier only block something like 75% of the damage, and not make the monster totally immune, so you could still brute force your way through, it'd just encourage a change of tactics. Berserkers could still berserk for overwhelming physical damage and chop their way through. Agree with tabstorm that monsters which are flat out immune probably aren't desirable.

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Post Monday, 10th September 2018, 16:51

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

tasonir wrote:When I read the thread title, I assumed it was going to be something that encouraged building different types of damage, rather than more anti-summoning.

Something like a monster which when hit by elemental damage, gets an elemental barrier which blocks/reduces all further elemental damage, until he's hit by a significant physical attack. And then gets a physical barrier, until hit by elemental damage, etc. There's issues with this, in that you don't want a berserker to be completely unable to kill them with melee, and that there's spells which deal physical/non-elemental damage (a conjurer having to switch between fireball and Iskenderun's mystic blast or iron shot isn't really hybridizing). But I think there's still room for a workable design - you'd probably want to make the barrier only block something like 75% of the damage, and not make the monster totally immune, so you could still brute force your way through, it'd just encourage a change of tactics. Berserkers could still berserk for overwhelming physical damage and chop their way through. Agree with tabstorm that monsters which are flat out immune probably aren't desirable.

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Post Tuesday, 11th September 2018, 22:41

Re: Hybridization-encouraging monsters

Wahaha wrote:
VeryAngryFelid wrote:You may want to visit GDD where summoners are discussed right now.

I had read that thread. I think you want to make summoning weaker because it's too strong. If that's the case, just try to make it weaker. Encouraging hybrid summoners and making summoning weaker are things that can overlap but they're not directly related.

Summoning is not bad for a melee+summoning playstyle rn. It's not meta but it's workable. It's played by getting good melee and acceptable defenses in light armor and then training summoning to increase your damage and tactical options. By the way, spectral weapon should be removed from the game or changed to like lvl 6 or higher.


spectral weapon isn't worth it at level 6. by the time you can afford to invest XP into getting a level 6 spectral weapon, your character is probably already far enough along to win provided you don't make any major errors. It's not going to make your character THAT much better.
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