swords


Although the central place for design discussion is ##crawl-dev on freenode, some may find it helpful to discuss requests and suggestions here first.

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Post Friday, 13th December 2013, 21:19

swords

In movies swords tend to be a defensive weapon: deflecting bullets, blocking attacks, and such. Like spears and axes swords really should have a specialness to them.

I say either allow them to passively deflect attacks, like sheilds, and even give some the reflect brand, or simply give them all the protection brand and remove protection from other weapons.

Also some swords could have a regeneration brand or mr+ to keep with the defense theme.
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Shoals Surfer

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Post Friday, 13th December 2013, 22:39

Re: swords

I really don't like the idea of a primarily defensive brand, especially if it's tied to one weapon type. It would lead to silliness like people carrying around Regeneration Swords or Deflection Swords out of combat, then switching to a weapon that can actually kill things fast with Flaming or Electricity or whatever.

Long Blades already have some defensive aspects in that they have good 1-handers, letting you use a shield, but +5 AC or Regen really isn't worth taking an extra turn or three to kill an enemy, because that becomes an extra ten or thirty turns in bigger fights, at which point the extra time you've spent getting smacked has completely invalidated any defensive bonus.

And besides, the reason you see swords being defensive weapons is because in movies, swords are the only melee weapons that matter, the other weapon types being delegated to minions and sidekicks.
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Post Saturday, 14th December 2013, 01:13

Re: swords

wizzzargh wrote:And besides, the reason you see swords being defensive weapons is because in movies, swords are the only melee weapons that matter, the other weapon types being delegated to minions and sidekicks.
Historically a sword was a very good defensive weapon if you actually had one, but offensively they were no better than a mace (and much worse against any sort of armour) and they were also really expensive and difficult to make compared to other weapons. Once the halberd was invented they got even less useful. There's a good reason bayonets always have a spear head instead of a sword mount.

I don't like the idea of a defensive weapon class at all. If another reaching/cleaving-style weapon class ability ever gets added, my vote still goes to making maces partially ignore AC; long blades can just be the "basic" weapon class.

If I really wanted to make swords in Crawl more realistic, the first thing I would do is make them weigh less. Real-life medieval swords over 4 kilograms were very rare, and if you did have a sword heavier than that, it would be a really crappy sword for fighting. In crawl, a long sword weighs 16 aum and a plate armour weighs 65 aum. In real life, a medieval long sword would weigh no more than 1.5kg, and Renaissance swords were even lighter. A full plate armour would usually be at least 15kg. It is similarly bizarre that long swords are heavier than maces (12 aum).

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Crypt Cleanser

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Post Saturday, 14th December 2013, 02:17

Re: swords

How about swords get a small damage boost vs unarmoured opponents. Maces get a small bonus vs armoured opponents. (where armoured means they're wearing a body armour item)
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Post Saturday, 14th December 2013, 02:47

Re: swords

I'm a proponent for staves giving some shield value.
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Post Saturday, 14th December 2013, 10:45

Re: swords

It's been explained multiple times that these suggestions (yes, these exact ones) won't happen because they in no way change how you use the weapon; they're just invisible background numbers. The weapon class specials were given a very specific set of criteria, which I'll try to quote from memory: a) they must be completely passive, b) they must be clear and simple, and c) they must have a meaningful tactical impact -- i.e. using an axe must actually encourage you to take different actions than you would when using a spear. Cleave and reach both succeed at this, since cleave encourages you to fight in the open and reach opens up various options other weapons won't give you, such as attacking over an enemy's head. SH value, AC penetration, reflection, etc. all fail, since they will never change the way you do things whatsoever. If you want them to be just passively better, then just increase their base damage.

Now that I think about it there was a subtler requirement, that tabbing must usually still be the best way to kill stuff, since otherwise you'd have to reposition for every single attack against every single enemy, which would be impossibly annoying. But that one doesn't really matter here.

As for the armoured/unarmoured thing, nothing meaningful wears armour past the early game. And hardly anything wears it there. Orc warriors/knights? Elves I guess? That's basically it. And the only thing this would do is encourage you to carry around two different weapons and switch all the time, which you'd never do because it'd be annoying, so it's just +5% damage all over again.

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Post Saturday, 14th December 2013, 11:04

Re: swords

There were interesting ideas about free movement action on attack, cumulatively increasing damage against one target and big attack/damage bonus when you initiate fight (step to enemy first). Those three can affect fighting style pretty much.
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Post Saturday, 14th December 2013, 16:24

Re: swords

epsilon wrote:free movement action on attack


Yes, I really liked the fencing proposal for long blades. Being able to walk aroud enemy and simultaneously attack would definitely change your tactics, opening a whole new field of combat manoeuvring.
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Post Saturday, 14th December 2013, 16:28

Re: swords

AC penetration would change fights somewhat though. It makes stone giants easier to kill and leaves ugly things about the same, so it's relevant in fights with multiple monsters - which are also the only fights where cleaving is relevant. Then again, a resistible damage brand does the same thing, so maybe it isn't worth adding, yeah. I just think it's less terrible than the other suggestions :P

ontoclasm wrote:And the only thing this would do is encourage you to carry around two different weapons and switch all the time
Well, not if they're in two different weapon classes...
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 11:06

Re: swords

Hello! I leaved the forum activity and crawl gaming for more than a year. I have seen there are new races, new layouts, new spells and monsters... and the very same ideas about weapons that were discussed when I leave. It's surprising how recurrent the topic is.
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 11:53

Re: swords

You will probably encounter epic remove-the-item-destruction-ffs thread during this or maybe next week too!

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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 14:43

Re: swords

Don't forget "fix poison". Also, looks like we have another Summoning suggestion, though it looks pretty good.

As far as sword uniqueness goes, I like the dueling concept with increasing damage against one target because it discourages kiting. It strongly encourages hallway fighting, but 99% of everything does that anyway.
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 17:49

Re: swords

You could always make swords occasionally auto 'c'hop corpses into pieces upon killing things. Maces could make more blood splatter effects upon killing.
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 17:58

Re: swords

Weapon specials should be tactically relevant.
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 18:09

Re: swords

ontoclasm wrote:a) they must be completely passive

Cleave and reach both succeed at this

Well, except for reaching not being completely passive.

In all seriousness, would something that was as tactically interesting as reach and cleave but did involve evoking in certain cases get an automatic smackdown? And in that case, why is reaching considered OK?
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 18:30

Re: swords

What about giving maces a chance to daze a monster, such that they can't attack for a few turns. Would that violate the Tab rule? Tab could default to attacking a non-dazed monster, or maybe form some sort of adjusted threat level so that really strong dazed things would still be targetted but moderately strong things being dazed would be demoted under lower-HD attacking monsters.

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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 18:49

Re: swords

As long as we're all giving our opinions, it's kind of odd that swords tend to be higher delay and higher damage than maces, whereas I'd expect the opposite. There are .5 mindelay whips but no really fast swords. There are dire flails but no .6 mindelay swords bigger than falchions and demon blades. This is not a problem and there is no reason to change it, but I find it funny.
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 20:38

Re: swords

njvack wrote:In all seriousness, would something that was as tactically interesting as reach and cleave but did involve evoking in certain cases get an automatic smackdown? And in that case, why is reaching considered OK?
I think the idea is that having one fiddly weapon tactic is OK, while having multiple would not be. Similar to how having all gods be as fiddly as Nemblex or all spells as fiddly as Charms would definitely be bad, but having one of each category like that is tolerable if not great.

I would like to change reaching to removed the Evocations.

Also, I couldn't find anything confirming or denying if you play offline tiles, but if you do you may not know that clicking is by far the best way to handle reaching, and having to press the 'v' key is about 20x worse.
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 20:42

Re: swords

Tab reaching works which is part of why reaching is not as bad as some other evoke thing might be.

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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 20:58

Re: swords

njvack wrote:Well, except for reaching not being completely passive.

I think it's because the criteria are basically contradictory. The effects have to not interfere with the flow of the game at all, but at the same time they have to interfere with the flow of the game by changing the tactics you use. You could easily strike down reaching on the first point and cleaving on the second.

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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 21:05

Re: swords

Reaching was the first weapon class to get special treatment, that's how it ended up with an active move (and if you are using this with the v command then you'll readily agree it should be the only one).

Leafsnail: I don't follow. What the desiderata boil down to is that weapon powers should make you consider position and attacking targets -- where is the contradiction?
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Post Tuesday, 14th January 2014, 22:14

Re: swords

njvack wrote:In all seriousness, would something that was as tactically interesting as reach and cleave but did involve evoking in certain cases get an automatic smackdown?

Maybe not, but since evoking is so often the reason why proposals are bad, banning it trims them down.

And in that case, why is reaching considered OK?

It was there to begin with. We adapted autofight to make it work, so it's acceptable, but we're seeing the limits.
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Barkeep

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 01:45

Re: swords

galehar wrote:Maybe not, but since evoking is so often the reason why proposals are bad, banning it trims them down.

The thing to keep in mind is that it rules out effects you might want to use once per many fights -- abilities that affect player and/or monster positioning might fall into that category.

For example: let's say staves got a "vault" ability -- it lets you jump over an adjacent monster with some tradeoffs.* It might be a terrible proposal, but you'd use rarely so "but you'd hit 'v' occasionally" seems like a small aspect of it. You can draw whatever line you like, but "no UI hassles" seems saner than "passive moves only." :)

* For example: say, vaulting is a slow action, so the monster(s) next to you will get a shot in on you. But once you land, you get a free step -- so you can vault over a monster and be out of melee range, in exchange for risking a hit.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 02:22

Re: swords

The goal here is to come up with an idea that sounds terribly overpowered, like cleaving, but is in actual practice usually useless, like cleaving.

This is because anything that is actually useful becomes terribly overpowered as soon as monsters get a hold of it. Now since it can't be anything actually helpful but it is still expected to somehow change the tactics of the player, we have to be sensational. It has to be such a wild effect that a casual observer will think it powerful, so that the actual uselessness only becomes apparent with close inspection. This way players can still delude themselves with feelings of badassitude as they cleave away at the mobs of rats until any kind of actual threat walks into view (at which point go back to standard tactics of obsessively refusing to engage more than one target at a time).

Reaching by the way, fails at basically every criteria ever given for weapon effects, and only remains as-is because changing something would mean an admittance of failure, either in the design of reaching or the design of the aforementioned criteria.

Anyway I think merging Short Blades and Long Blades is a pretty obvious solution. Short/Long Blade apts are already very similar for most races, and even in the cases where they aren't, crosstraining MAKES them similar. They already have stabbing as their "special effect" so we wouldn't even need to make more of these pointless threads.

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 02:30

Re: swords

Volteccer_Jack wrote:Anyway I think merging Short Blades and Long Blades is a pretty obvious solution. Short/Long Blade apts are already very similar for most races, and even in the cases where they aren't, crosstraining MAKES them similar. They already have stabbing as their "special effect" so we wouldn't even need to make more of these pointless threads.

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Crypt Cleanser

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 11:27

Re: swords

Stabbing with a claymore?

Long blades have edges so that they slash or cut rather than stab
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 12:13

Re: swords

I'm pretty sure you don't want to get stabbed with a claymore. Besides, stabbing makes no sense already, it's just as easy to kill someone unaware or otherwise defenseless with most large weapons as with a dagger. Probably easier. Cf executioners. In a hellhole where everyone hates you anyway there is no need for concealed weapons.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 13:07

Re: swords

njvack wrote:For example: let's say staves got a "vault" ability -- it lets you jump over an adjacent monster with some tradeoffs.* It might be a terrible proposal, but you'd use rarely so "but you'd hit 'v' occasionally" seems like a small aspect of it. You can draw whatever line you like, but "no UI hassles" seems saner than "passive moves only." :)

I think the idea is that those kind of rarely used activable effects are much more appropriate for an unrandart. A weapon effect should trigger (or be triggered) during any fight.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 13:44

Re: swords

My favourite proposal for long blades is making a killing action with them free/ much quicker than a normal attack. It wouldn't have too big an effect (the main ones I see are making it easier to get through popcorn and making it easier to retreat from a group of enemies) but, like cleaving, it would at least be pretty cool.

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 14:31

Re: swords

Leafsnail: But how would that change anything about gameplay?

The idea I liked best was glancing attacks for long blades: whenever you move past a monster, you make an attack on it.

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 15:01

Re: swords

Galefury wrote:I'm pretty sure you don't want to get stabbed with a claymore. Besides, stabbing makes no sense already, it's just as easy to kill someone unaware or otherwise defenseless with most large weapons as with a dagger. Probably easier. Cf executioners. In a hellhole where everyone hates you anyway there is no need for concealed weapons.


My feel on this is that stabbing is for stealthy kills or even random lucky insta-kills straight to the throat that increase with SB skills. While a seasoned LB fencer still can split by half like a pillow a poor monster in the very first blow it's more difficult to achieve that regularly, without any noise and with high level monsters even if they are unware. A stabber-oriented role could do it more proficiently in the first attack. How does it sound?ç

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 15:12

Re: swords

I quite like glancing attacks too but there are big problems with them (what of you move faster than your weapon swings? Doesn't it mean you want to dance back and forth if you're fighting multiple monsters, violating the tab rule?).

The chain kills would allow you to dispatch fragile monsters without wasting turns, and also give you a free turn to reposition after you kill any enemy (this is important because that monster's death may allow other enemies to start attacking you next turn). Thinking about it I can see some fairly significant utility in retreating (if you're, say, boxed in by weak summons, or if you're fighting a row of enemies and need to run after killing the front one).

It's not a huge difference, but I think a weak effect is the only way to come close to meetimg the requirements.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 15:18

Re: swords

Leafsnail wrote:I quite like glancing attacks too but there are big problems with them (what of you move faster than your weapon swings? Doesn't it mean you want to dance back and forth if you're fighting multiple monsters, violating the tab rule?).

This is easy, the action duration is the slowest of the 2 (move and attack). However, this also means that the special attack can make you move slower. So if you move faster than you swing, you want to unwield before running past some monsters. This is probably rare, but still bad.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 15:23

Re: swords

Another approach: glancing has only a chance, and that chance goes down with every glance that particular monster already received. Dancing becomes a pretty bad idea, because the monster will still want to bash you on its turns.

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 15:37

Re: swords

How about a separate glancing timeout? When moving in a way that would cause a glancing attack, if and only if this timeout is at 0, you do a glancing attack and the timeout gets set to your attack delay. The timeout will decrease only during time spent walking and resting.

As a result, you can't get "free" or faster attacks from movement or from movement interspersed with combat no matter what your move and attack speeds are, and you suffer no malus from holding a long blade during movement.

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 15:39

Re: swords

Lasty: interesting!

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 15:44

Re: swords

It would be really annoying and counterintuitive if your weapon made it harder to escape. Aren't the abilities meant to be virtually 100% positive, anyway?

I guess the glancing chance thing kindof works but I still don't like it, you'd want to dance at the start of the fight if it let you hit multiple monsters/attack twice as fast as you otherwise would.

As I said I really like the general idea of glancing but these issues seem pretty big. You might be able to solve issue one by making the move speed normal and reducing the attack's damage accordingly though (so if you're moving twice as fast as you swing your damage is halved, or something).

e: actually the timeout suggestion works too. You could also have it so if you could glance two monsters at once you hit one of them at random.

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 16:34

Re: swords

In cast Volteccer_Jack's explanation was too hyperbolic for you guys: reaching is a poor weapon ability by these criteria. It fails to be passive. If there is more than one monster on the screen it is very likely that you will need to use 'v' to attack. In addition (and this part makes me rather upset) it greatly lowers the quality of console Crawl games because you have to constantly examine monsters to see whether they are wielding a reaching weapon or not.

I actually think cleave is okay although I object to some parts of its implementation (specifically: being blocked by walls, hitting 7 squares instead of 8, having a spoilery damage cut). It is true that it rarely actually changes your tactics, though.

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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 17:20

Re: swords

I had some idea about long swords where the idea was when you hit a creature with a long sword, you could get a move (but not an attack) without retaliation from that creature, as long as the movement was adjacent to that creature. This seems weird to describe (some sort of parry effect) but I never really got as far as fleshing it out fully.

It has a similar net effect as a 'glancing' attack (allowing you to reposition in combat, without giving the monster a free attack) but rather than "both get an attack" it's "neither get an attack"

I never fully explored the idea, and as-is it seems clunky and potentially spoilery, so I'm just kind of throwing it out there with the hope that it contributes to the ideas rather than with the expectation that it will be "the" answer.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 17:33

Re: swords

duvessa wrote:Reaching is a poor weapon ability by these criteria. It fails to be passive. If there is more than one monster on the screen it is very likely that you will need to use 'v' to attack. In addition (and this part makes me rather upset) it greatly lowers the quality of console Crawl games because you have to constantly examine monsters to see whether they are wielding a reaching weapon or not.
Yes, these shortcomings are all correct and the question is whether polearms gain enough to endure them. It would be possible to modify reaching: instead of attacking at distance two, it could make an automated attack when closing into distance one:
  Code:
...@..H...   player wielding a trident against a hydra, player moves right
....@.H...   players attacks!

This would mean a single, free attack. A different way to deal with reaching: restrict it to the eight cardinal directions, and use reach-attacking instead of moving, if possible (can still use specifically move by Ctrl-direction). What this loses is attacking through allies.

The interface problem about monster weapon extends beyond polearms. We would also like to see presence of egos. I thought that unicode accents on monster glyphs should work, but it seems this is impossible or hard to do.

I actually think cleave is okay although I object to some parts of its implementation (specifically: being blocked by walls, hitting 7 squares instead of 8, having a spoilery damage cut). It is true that it rarely actually changes your tactics, though.
Quite alright if it sometimes does. I'd like to make cleaving unbounded, but these restrictions were necessary to get cleaving into the game in the first place.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 18:03

Re: swords

In this discussion, I keep thinking about stabbing. On one hand, it's totally passive -- you just do a normal attack to stab. On the other hand, it's one of the least passive things in Crawl; there are entire systems involving skills and spells and items and gods to make stabbing a good strategy. And I think it works really well, both design- and play-wise.

I think that if stabbing were suggested today, it would seem insanely overcomplicated. But I suspect that something along those lines is where the really big wins would be.
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 18:28

Re: swords

The only problem could be the reaching + brand weapons, but a switching colour effect may be helpful enough. Little de-railed thread... can we move this suggestion to a proper one?
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Post Wednesday, 15th January 2014, 19:33

Re: swords

Flashing icons or underlines or diacriticals or whatever don't seem like great solutions.

My suggestion: pressing some key puts you in "weapon view mode" where each individual monster has their glyph replaced by a unique alphabet letter. The monster list on the right is replaced by a list of each character on screen, followed by a description of the weapon wielded by the corresponding monster.

An abbreviated example:
Normally you see:
  Code:
.ooo.
##o##            [normal HUD stuff]
##@##
##.##
##.##

Do any of those non-adjacent orcs have a polearm? Hit a single key to switch view mode and see:
  Code:
.BCD.          A: an orcish short sword
##A##          B: a glowing orcish flail
##@##          C: a runed spear
##.##          D: an orcish trident
##.##

With a single keystroke you are able to see what everybody is wielding or look up a specific monster you are concerned about.

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Post Thursday, 16th January 2014, 09:14

Re: swords

dpeg wrote:the question is whether polearms gain enough to endure them

They do. Please, don't change anything in a current reaching, it's perfectly fine as it is. I use polearms in 90% of my runs and the only time when I could complain about reaching system was when server lag caused my TAB to randomly waste scrolls.

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Post Wednesday, 14th January 2015, 20:24

Re: swords

Siegurt wrote:I had some idea about long swords where the idea was when you hit a creature with a long sword, you could get a move (but not an attack) without retaliation from that creature, as long as the movement was adjacent to that creature. This seems weird to describe (some sort of parry effect) but I never really got as far as fleshing it out fully.

It has a similar net effect as a 'glancing' attack (allowing you to reposition in combat, without giving the monster a free attack) but rather than "both get an attack" it's "neither get an attack"

I never fully explored the idea, and as-is it seems clunky and potentially spoilery, so I'm just kind of throwing it out there with the hope that it contributes to the ideas rather than with the expectation that it will be "the" answer.


Hm, I was interested to find this thread. I had a few ideas similar to this after playing Hoplite a year ago or so, particularly after cleaving was added to axes. It seemed simplest just to give a free attack when moving diagonal to a creature (ie, you're adjacent to a creature, and after a move, you're adjacent to that same creature, then you get a free attack).

Dungeon Master

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Post Wednesday, 14th January 2015, 21:32

Re: swords

grisamentum wrote:Hm, I was interested to find this thread. I had a few ideas similar to this after playing Hoplite a year ago or so, particularly after cleaving was added to axes. It seemed simplest just to give a free attack when moving diagonal to a creature (ie, you're adjacent to a creature, and after a move, you're adjacent to that same creature, then you get a free attack).

Leafsnail wrote:I quite like glancing attacks too but there are big problems with them (what if you move faster than your weapon swings? Doesn't it mean you want to dance back and forth if you're fighting multiple monsters, violating the tab rule?).


and if you make movement take max(attack_speed, move_speed) while holding a longblade, that's obviously a whole other barrel of worms...

Snake Sneak

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Post Thursday, 15th January 2015, 02:07

Re: swords

PleasingFungus wrote:
grisamentum wrote:Hm, I was interested to find this thread. I had a few ideas similar to this after playing Hoplite a year ago or so, particularly after cleaving was added to axes. It seemed simplest just to give a free attack when moving diagonal to a creature (ie, you're adjacent to a creature, and after a move, you're adjacent to that same creature, then you get a free attack).

Leafsnail wrote:I quite like glancing attacks too but there are big problems with them (what if you move faster than your weapon swings? Doesn't it mean you want to dance back and forth if you're fighting multiple monsters, violating the tab rule?).


and if you make movement take max(attack_speed, move_speed) while holding a longblade, that's obviously a whole other barrel of worms...


Perhaps instead if glancing blows did damage proportional to attack_speed/move_speed, so that you could never do more damage per aut by glancing than by just attacking?

Temple Termagant

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Post Friday, 16th January 2015, 07:23

Re: swords

dpeg wrote:It would be possible to modify reaching: instead of attacking at distance two, it could make an automated attack when closing into distance one

I like this idea, and it could also work for long blades. Call it lunge, thrust, or charge.

When closing to distance zero directly towards an enemy, you attack it.
  Code:
BCDEF     moving to [1] attacks B
A123G     moving to [2] attacks D
..@..     moving to [3] attacks F


Here's how I see this proposal in light of the weapon special criteria.
  • passive [yes]
  • clear and simple [yes]
  • meaningful tactical impact [yes: position yourself to lunge at enemies and avoid lunges from them]
  • tab is usually best [yes: long blades users can worry less who moves first when still one space from an enemy, just hit tab]

pros:
  • you can play normally and tab to get a small benefit, but careful positioning gives a better one
  • very simple and easy to understand

cons:
  • you need to be aware of enemies wielding long blades as they'll attack you sooner
  • design overlap with reaching (attack first)

other thoughts:
  • The time to perform the action could be balanced between move cost (more powerful) and move + attack cost (less powerful).
  • If approaching only from cardinal directions is too fiddly, it could be changed to attack when moving adjacent. In that case, it must be easy to understand which monster would be attacked.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Friday, 16th January 2015, 08:44

Re: swords

Someone upthread mentioned a parry mechanic. To not-so-subtly borrow an idea from another game, what if long blades had a parry/riposte ability that disarmed?

Basically, on every attack received the player would have a chance based on dex and weapon skill (and maybe HD to avoid trivializing some melee-based uniques?) to parry the attack and gain the Riposte status. Attacking with this status would swing with half normal delay and disarm the target, removing the status in the process. Doing anything else would take the normal amount of time and remove the status, so in other words you have to use it or lose it. Further parries would no longer take place with the status active in order to keep the effect from being too good defensively.

This is slightly fiddly, but I think it fits the criteria well. It's passive and doesn't require evoking. The bonus is clear to the player via the delay displayed next to the game timer and a simple message ("Your riposte disarms the hobgoblin!"). Tabbing is still good because you get your extra fast attacks either way, but optimal play involves watching for the status and disarming the most dangerous enemy in melee range. Also, running away becomes more interactive because parrying an attack while fleeing might make it a good idea to stop running for one turn and disarm the thing chasing you and improve your chances of surviving. Finally, there's no overlap with anything but the new captain's cutlass, which doesn't appear anyway in the vast majority of games, and the Jiyva tendrils mutation, neither of which is interactive in the way this mechanic is.

I guess one question would be whether monsters would get this benefit. Disarming the player such that its weapon falls to the ground or even just forcibly unwielding the player's weapon would both be incredibly obnoxious, but maybe it could just apply a single-turn weapon delay slowdown, so basically the opposite effect of the speedup associated with a player parry.

Crypt Cleanser

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Post Friday, 16th January 2015, 10:49

Re: swords

Hm...
Merge short/long blades, long blades get 0.6 delay, short 0.5. Instead of lesser delay for long blades, how about making them slow down attacked enemy's next attack? I'm in favour of 0.6 delay - less gimmicky.
Maces & flails are already good - you have slow & heavy types (eveningstar, spiked club) and probably the best one-hander in the game (demon whip/sacred scourge). I advocate boosting two-handed maces's accuracy, as there's really no point for going for two-handed maces if you can train axes.
Polearms have reaching
Axes have cleaving
Staves.. have elemental staves, which are best weapons in the game if you have the skills. How about giving all staves an invisible 'blocking' brand that gives few SH points?
"Damned, damned be the legions of the damned..."
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