Buff spells drain mp while active


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Crypt Cleanser

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 02:30

Buff spells drain mp while active

Buff spells drain mp while active. For example, repel missiles drains 2 mp per 10 aut (1 turn). This has the potential to solve the current issues with charms spells.

First of all, players will cast these spells at the start of combat or in the middle of combat instead of trying to keep them always on (or being penalized for not trying to always keep them on). I believe that is the ideal way for buff spells to be used.

Second, it adds another cost to using cheap spells like repel missiles. It is true that a primarily melee character who wants to cast repel missiles has few other uses for mp anyway, and so the mp drain would not be a big deal. However, if a character wants to cast repel missiles and nothing else then that is perfectly fine in my opinion, let them do so. On the other hand, if a character uses mp for more than just rmsl, then the mp drain of rmsl can become a significant drawback. If that character also wants to cast for example regeneration at the same time, their mp will likely be entirely drained over the course of a fight. If both repel missiles and regeneration drain 2 mp per turn, a character with 40 mp would be able to maintain both of these spells for 10 turns. One spell would last 20 turns, or maybe one or two turns more with mp regen.

Third, the mp drain cost means it is now a bad idea to use as many buff spells as possible, as shown in the previous example. The player has to decide how many spells to use and which spells to use in a particular fight.

Fourth, it makes contamination from haste and invisibility unnecessary. The purpose of contamination with these spells is to prevent recasting them for extended use. Mp drain would naturally limit the use of these spells while also creating interesting decisions in mp management. In my opinion these spells would work better with mp drain than contam. Another spell that is worth mentioning here is swiftness. In practice, swiftness is currently useful when you can cast it, gain distance from an enemy, and reach up stairs before the slowness kicks in (the up stairs part is crucial). I think that is the only situation where it is worth using. This spell would be more interesting if it drained mp while active, instead of having the slowness. It would be useful in more situations and infinite kiting stays impossible. So in general, the drawbacks that certain buff spells currently have could be handled by the same limiting system that would affect every other buff spell, which is more elegant in my opinion.

You might be thinking that this mp drain thing makes buff spells weaker. It partially does (and is deserved in the case of repel missiles for example), but the main goal of this proposal is to make these spells interesting to use. In my opinion buff spells should have strong effects and last for a limited amount of time. This adds decisions on which spell to use and when, as mentioned above, and at least personally, I would enjoy using them more.

Balancing mp drain and casting other spells:
A character who casts a lot of non-buff spells would be disadvantaged by mp drain a lot more than a primarily melee character. To amend this (if it needs amending?), the spellcasting skill would reduce the rate at which mp is drained. If you think this is getting too complicated, you might be right. Yes this is adding a new mechanic to the game, and new mechanics are seen very negatively. But I think that this would be easy to understand and intuitive. Any character that casts a lot of spells is already very likely to have some spellcasting skill. They would naturally get this new spellcasting bonus without really needing to concern themselves with it.

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 05:05

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

My 3 cents:

MP should be drained only when the buff is activated/triggered, so for rmsl it might cost 2 mp every time you reflect a missile and for e.g. ring of flames it costs 1 mp every time it generates a new flame (so standing still is cheaper than moving). This way you could still leave most charms up indefinitely (obviously charms would be changed to not time out unless your mp goes to 0). Even regeneration could be left up permanently, because it would only drain MP if you are currently healing.

Having these costs (or the chance of mp draining) decrease with spell power would probably be good, that way casting focussed chars (who usually have more spell power) wouldn't be losing too much mp, but a fighter who just picked up rmsl on the side with minimal skill training would get significant mp draining. This would basically result in the same effect as how it works now: more power = lasts longer, but without having to recast.

Deactivating charms could be an instant ability.
Last edited by Kramin42 on Thursday, 5th June 2014, 09:07, edited 1 time in total.

Slime Squisher

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 08:31

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Currently hybrids get 30-40MP easily in late game and spellcasters - 45-50MP. A hybrid might cast haste+regeneration+spectral weapon and that will take only 12MP, leaving him more than enough MPs for some later burnout. Even if he runs out of mana, he is still capable of killing. Primary spellcaster after using regen and haste will have to seriously worry about constant drain effect of his main resource in parallel to cost of every other spell he uses.

Spellcasters already have really hard time to deal with limited mana in combat, while occasional mana-burners will not care about the change a lot since they can either proceed without mana for a while or just press '5' a lot.

If such solution was applied, I cannot see it working otherwise than together with increased mana cap, which would have other deep consequences.

Eventually, the solution will bring us to initial point, when spells just worked for a while and then expired, except that we will furthermore have to turn them manually off. We tediously re-casted buffs every fight and we will have to do it again - unless we won't be able to afford them (and it's not equivalent to more interesting and tactical).

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 11:28

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Bart wrote:Spellcasters already have really hard time to deal with limited mana in combat


While 'really hard' is perhaps a bit of an overstatement, it is certainly true that characters which primarily use spells are quite a bit worse at dealing with larger groups of non-trivial enemies than more melee-focused characters are. If rMsl were to cost 2 MP every time you dodge a missile it would still be a no-brainer for casters, except that instead of virtually always being worthwhile like it is now, it will instead become suicidal to use. An unlucky meeting with a centaur/yak pack would leave you drained of MP in three or four turns.
Wins: DEWz^Veh (4 runes), DEWz^Veh (15 runes), DEWz^Sif (3 runes), HOBe^Trog (3 runes), MiDK^Yred (3 runes), DECj^Sif (4 runes), GrBe^Trog (3 runes), DECj^Vehu (3 runes), MiFi^Wu Jian (3 runes), DEFE^Veh (3 runes), DEFE^Veh (15 runes)

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 13:51

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

FalconNL wrote:
Bart wrote:Spellcasters already have really hard time to deal with limited mana in combat


While 'really hard' is perhaps a bit of an overstatement, it is certainly true that characters which primarily use spells are quite a bit worse at dealing with larger groups of non-trivial enemies than more melee-focused characters are. If rMsl were to cost 2 MP every time you dodge a missile it would still be a no-brainer for casters, except that instead of virtually always being worthwhile like it is now, it will instead become suicidal to use. An unlucky meeting with a centaur/yak pack would leave you drained of MP in three or four turns.

Well the drain could be reduced to, say, 1 in (2*spellpower/25)^2 chance (every time at 12 power (##), 1/4 at 25 (####), 1/16 at 50 (######), ..., 1/400 at max power) of 2mp drain when you repel a missile. The reason for the square relationship is that a linear one would probably not be worth the XP.

With this scaling a mage with around 20 int, 7 average charms/air, and 10 spellcasting could achieve ##### (~40) power for a 1 in 10 chance of 2mp drain, which wouldn't be too bad, at least in my opinion. At low power though it would still drain mp quickly.

Obviously the numbers/scaling can be tweaked for balance.

Swamp Slogger

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 14:42

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I have to say that personally I'm not a big fan of taking random hits to your MP pool. It's not too much of a problem as long as you're over 11 MP, but when you're nearing the end of your reserves that 2 MP can be the difference that determines whether you're able to cast a certain spell or not (cBlink, Haste, Firestorm, etc.). I know, you should run away before your MP gets that low, but sometimes you don't have the option and screwing people over based on random chance seems like a bad idea.
Wins: DEWz^Veh (4 runes), DEWz^Veh (15 runes), DEWz^Sif (3 runes), HOBe^Trog (3 runes), MiDK^Yred (3 runes), DECj^Sif (4 runes), GrBe^Trog (3 runes), DECj^Vehu (3 runes), MiFi^Wu Jian (3 runes), DEFE^Veh (3 runes), DEFE^Veh (15 runes)

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 15:07

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

A couple of thoughts about this new system:
1: It flies in the face of what has been changed recently rmsl and it's ilk. Instead of the tedious process of constantly buffing before battle, the semi-permanent status effect allows for fewer button presses. I would rather see other status effects made more permanent, rather than less.
2: Casting buffs still takes time. It would be a rather sizeable nerf to cast more than one, because you are paying for an ability while getting nothing else from it while casting other spells. While this is currently the case, at least the spell was only paid for once, and not EVERY TURN.
3: If spellcasting needs to be drained somehow, I would rather see it as a semi-permanent loss of of the mp cost for a spell, unusable for the duration that the spell is active. For example, if a MfIE has 43 mp and casts DMsl, they will have 36 mp to work with for the duration of the spell. The buffs would work the way that they do now. Though to be honest, I'd be fine if things stayed the same.

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TeshiAlair

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 18:23

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Osgoodbad wrote:A couple of thoughts about this new system:
1: It flies in the face of what has been changed recently rmsl and it's ilk. Instead of the tedious process of constantly buffing before battle, the semi-permanent status effect allows for fewer button presses. I would rather see other status effects made more permanent, rather than less.
2: Casting buffs still takes time. It would be a rather sizeable nerf to cast more than one, because you are paying for an ability while getting nothing else from it while casting other spells. While this is currently the case, at least the spell was only paid for once, and not EVERY TURN.
3: If spellcasting needs to be drained somehow, I would rather see it as a semi-permanent loss of of the mp cost for a spell, unusable for the duration that the spell is active. For example, if a MfIE has 43 mp and casts DMsl, they will have 36 mp to work with for the duration of the spell. The buffs would work the way that they do now. Though to be honest, I'd be fine if things stayed the same.

1 - The change to rmsl happened because the spell is so cheap, it was a good idea to constantly have it casted. However there are a lot of problems with this design that are mentioned in other discussions, I did not want to restate them here. Permanent status effects are a bad idea because once you can cast them, even at a bad failure rate, you can just recast them in safety until they work. Making buffs active spells used in combat (using mp drain in this case) is the solution to this problem and other problems with buffs. If rmsl is cheap for its cost then make it not cheap. It would still be a very good spell with 2 mp/turn drain. That's how good it is.

2 - It's a nerf. Individual spells can get their power increased if necessary. I can't think of many spells that would need to be stronger.

3 - Permanent mp reservation has the problem described in 1 taken to the extreme. Also if rmsl reserved 30% of the mp pool, it would still be too good for melee characters.

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 22:49

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:
Osgoodbad wrote:A couple of thoughts about this new system:
1: It flies in the face of what has been changed recently rmsl and it's ilk. Instead of the tedious process of constantly buffing before battle, the semi-permanent status effect allows for fewer button presses. I would rather see other status effects made more permanent, rather than less.

1 - The change to rmsl happened because the spell is so cheap, it was a good idea to constantly have it casted. However there are a lot of problems with this design that are mentioned in other discussions, I did not want to restate them here. Permanent status effects are a bad idea because once you can cast them, even at a bad failure rate, you can just recast them in safety until they work. Making buffs active spells used in combat (using mp drain in this case) is the solution to this problem and other problems with buffs. If rmsl is cheap for its cost then make it not cheap. It would still be a very good spell with 2 mp/turn drain. That's how good it is.

Well, if it instead only drained on actual use (reflecting a missile), then it could still be left up permanently, as I mentioned above. This would still have the problem of getting the benefits of rmsl with little to no skill training, but having the probability of mp draining scale with spell power would mitigate this because an untrained char would run out of mp very quickly.

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 23:09

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Does anyone else actually feel that buffs need a nerf? It is ok to give players powers that don't have some crappy side effect. The current system is fine. Nothing about it needs fixing.
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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 23:47

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

If there's any change I would make to repel missiles, it would be to change the way it is affected by spell power. Currently spell power determines how quickly the spell expires, while the spell's effect is fixed (lower to-hit of bolts by 50-100%, beams by 0-100%). This means that as soon as you get this below say 80% failure there's no real reason to train it further since you can keep recasting it outside of combat until it succeeds and that you still have to recast it from time to time. While not nearly as tedious as the old behavior, it could still be improved.

Instead, I would make the duration infinite (until you forget the spell), but make the to-hit reduction based on spell power, e.g.

bolt_to_hit = bolt_to_hit * (0.75 - (0.25 + 0.5 * rnd()) * spellpower / max_spellpower)
beam_to_hit = beam_to_hit * (0.9 - 0.9 * rnd() * spellpower / max_spellpower)

i.e. at 0 spell power bolts and beam to-hits are reduced by 25 and 10%, respectively, and at max spellpower they are reduced by 50 to 100% and 10 to 100%.
Wins: DEWz^Veh (4 runes), DEWz^Veh (15 runes), DEWz^Sif (3 runes), HOBe^Trog (3 runes), MiDK^Yred (3 runes), DECj^Sif (4 runes), GrBe^Trog (3 runes), DECj^Vehu (3 runes), MiFi^Wu Jian (3 runes), DEFE^Veh (3 runes), DEFE^Veh (15 runes)

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Kramin42

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Post Thursday, 5th June 2014, 23:55

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

skjarl wrote:Does anyone else actually feel that buffs need a nerf?
yes

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 01:16

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

FalconNL wrote:If there's any change I would make to repel missiles, it would be to change the way it is affected by spell power. Currently spell power determines how quickly the spell expires, while the spell's effect is fixed (lower to-hit of bolts by 50-100%, beams by 0-100%). This means that as soon as you get this below say 80% failure there's no real reason to train it further since you can keep recasting it outside of combat until it succeeds and that you still have to recast it from time to time. While not nearly as tedious as the old behavior, it could still be improved.

Instead, I would make the duration infinite (until you forget the spell), but make the to-hit reduction based on spell power, e.g.

bolt_to_hit = bolt_to_hit * (0.75 - (0.25 + 0.5 * rnd()) * spellpower / max_spellpower)
beam_to_hit = beam_to_hit * (0.9 - 0.9 * rnd() * spellpower / max_spellpower)

i.e. at 0 spell power bolts and beam to-hits are reduced by 25 and 10%, respectively, and at max spellpower they are reduced by 50 to 100% and 10 to 100%.

This is a good way to nerf rmsl at low power, but it still has the problem of being a no-brainer for literally any char to memorize it at 90% fail, cast until it succeeds, and then forget it exists and enjoy your slight defense bonus for the rest of the game. Obviously it now rewards skill training, but you are still getting something for nothing.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 02:07

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Kramin42 wrote:This is a good way to nerf rmsl at low power, but it still has the problem of being a no-brainer for literally any char to memorize it at 90% fail, cast until it succeeds, and then forget it exists and enjoy your slight defense bonus for the rest of the game. Obviously it now rewards skill training, but you are still getting something for nothing.

It isn't for nothing: it still requires the skill training. And it's not like there aren't other skills that give you something for "nothing": what do you pay for the HP increase from fighting? The AC increase from Armour? The stealth increase from Stealth?

There is a corresponding fix for the miscast rate: if the miscast rate of Repel Missiles is at 90%, then 90% of ranged attacks aren't affected by the effect of repel missiles.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 03:33

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Hurkyl wrote:It isn't for nothing: it still requires the skill training. And it's not like there aren't other skills that give you something for "nothing": what do you pay for the HP increase from fighting? The AC increase from Armour? The stealth increase from Stealth?

There is a corresponding fix for the miscast rate: if the miscast rate of Repel Missiles is at 90%, then 90% of ranged attacks aren't affected by the effect of repel missiles.

What I am saying is that a naked, brainless, skill-less char will have only 75% failure rate, meaning you can get something for nothing (no XP cost). Having spell success effect the operation of the spell once cast is inconsistent and essentially the same as what FalconNL said anyway.

I think it is fair and nice that AE's get a low level defensive spell similar to how EE's and IE's get stoneskin and Ozo's armour. It's just that these spells need to have some other use cost than merely XP, otherwise they are no-brainers at 0 skill. For most spells (and for how charms currently/previously worked) this cost is the MP to cast it. If charms are to be non-tedious and indefinitely lasting then they need another cost. Charms need a tactical cost (like MP drain) if they can be used with no strategic cost.

Also, having a tactical cost helps differentiate charms from the potion/wand effects, which have no tactical cost but high strategic cost.

A final note: Indefinitely lasting charms should not mean you never turn them off, it should mean that you turn them on when it is tactically worth the cost and do not have to keep recasting them, whether that be for a single fight or a whole branch.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 10:24

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Kramin42 wrote: For most spells (and for how charms currently/previously worked) this cost is the MP to cast it.

Which is a tactically irrelevant cost, for a player with the patience to keep recasting them out of battle.

It's just that these spells need to have some other use cost than merely XP, otherwise they are no-brainers at 0 skill.

Again, I don't see this as a problem. Arguably it's an opportunity to do things better, but not a problem. Lots of things are no-brainers, like wearing gloves when you find them in the dungeon.

Charms need a tactical cost (like MP drain) if they can be used with no strategic cost.

They only need a tactical cost if the game is made worse by it not having a cost; adding a tactical cost for its own sake is bad design.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 13:01

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Making rMsl drain mana in a rate dependent on spellpower is the most acceptable version of this proposal, yet still not balanced. I cannot imagine young AE who would like to cast the spell early in the game and lose whole mana pool to a pack of kobolds with darts that would be otherwise harmful. Even if he could instantly turn the ability off (hello, another interface tedium), he would already be crippled by first blood effect. I doubt he should pay such price for using a spell which is supposed to be beneficial.

I think that the way to make rMsl tactically relevant in a simple way (and not screwed at the same time) is to force players to cast the spell in combat. It can be implemented by adding recast delay as in the case of swiftness. This would be an annoying implementation, though, and I'm glad that devs decided to shift rMsl to strategic spells group.
If rMsl is strategically not interesting enough, obvious fixes are:
- increasing spell level
- making protection (time and/or strength) more dependent on spellpower.
Personally... I would do both (I also dislike to memorize the spell every time I find it). rMsl, lvl3(4?), heavily spell-power dependent. Take that, no-brainers.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 15:17

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Turning rMsl into an even shittier version of Song of Shielding doesn't seem like a good idea to me.
Kramin42 wrote:What I am saying is that a naked, brainless, skill-less char will have only 75% failure rate, meaning you can get something for nothing (no XP cost). Having spell success effect the operation of the spell once cast is inconsistent and essentially the same as what FalconNL said anyway.
A naked, brainless, skill-less char will get 1AC for "nothing" if he puts on a helmet. Is that a problem?

Thinking about it an alternative to turning charms into items would be to make them semi-permanent but
a) you can only use one at once
b) (maybe) they take a non-trivial amount of time to cast (so you can't just flip between them constantly)
Basically then there'd be the opportunity cost of not using other spells to consider.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 16:20

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I have a patch in Mantis for a rMsl replacement - Wind Wall. It's a stationary effect so you have to cast it in combat but still gives the early AE decent defense against ranged attacks. I agree with Bart that an MP drain would be horrible for early casters - it could work for DMsl using 1-2 MP per deflection since by the time you can cast that one you'll have a decent reserve.
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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 16:43

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I'd be interested to see Wind Wall in action, but I think 0.15 should definitely combine rmsl and dmsl, because there's no way we need both spells in the game. Just remove dmsl, buff rmsl, and bump it up a few levels and call it a good day's work, as far as I'm concerned.

I'm not a big fan of the mp drain idea, however. If buff spells are seen as so overpowered that they need enormous downsides to even be considered, then they should just be removed instead of being made functionally useless. But I think these spells could largely be changed to make everybody more happy, except maybe for Haste, since I think there's nothing you can do at this point short of removing it that will really satisfy the people who loathe it.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 18:52

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

On the subject of haste, I had an idea similar to how berserk works. Remove the contam effect from haste, and make it so you get a special debuff after haste expires. I was thinking it could apply a status effect that lowers your damage by 50% for some amount of time, and also give you the EXH status. You can't recast until EXH wears off.
This effect is shorter, the higher your spellpower.

So now there's a tactical consideration to haste, instead of the strategic (and mostly meaningless one) in the form of contam. On top of that, spellpower would actually matter
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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 19:10

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Just remove the charms school, buff regen items, and create some item that allows you to evoke rmsl/dmsl that recharges based on XP or a "wand of repulsion". Change spectral weapon to not charms so that it remains in the game.

Side note: I really don't like arguments along the line "X is boring": It's not only subjective, but you could argue that about most of the game.
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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 19:41

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

tabstorm wrote:Just remove the charms school, buff regen items, and create some item that allows you to evoke rmsl/dmsl that recharges based on XP or a "wand of repulsion". Change spectral weapon to not charms so that it remains in the game.


Don't do that. It would be (objectively)boring. :lol:

Instead, leave them as they are now, but just let the current fail % determine whether it fades BEFORE each deflection. So you cast it with your armor off, get dressed up again, go fight with a 92% fail on your deflect missiles, and it has a 92% chance to fail before even attempting to deflect the first missile that comes your way.
On top of that, make spellpower effect how often it actually deflects.
I suppose at that point Rmsl and Dmsl are essentially the same spell, so you could just drop DMSL.

Then apply similar logic to the other similar spells, like shroud of galubria, and phase shift. Fail% determines whether you lose the buff each check, spellpower determines whether it actually does its thing, or how well it does its thing.

Then do what I said before to haste.
Regen is fine as is, I think.
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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 20:19

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

damiac wrote:
tabstorm wrote:Just remove the charms school, buff regen items, and create some item that allows you to evoke rmsl/dmsl that recharges based on XP or a "wand of repulsion". Change spectral weapon to not charms so that it remains in the game.


Don't do that. It would be (objectively)boring. :lol:

Instead, leave them as they are now, but just let the current fail % determine whether it fades BEFORE each deflection. So you cast it with your armor off, get dressed up again, go fight with a 92% fail on your deflect missiles, and it has a 92% chance to fail before even attempting to deflect the first missile that comes your way.
On top of that, make spellpower effect how often it actually deflects.
I suppose at that point Rmsl and Dmsl are essentially the same spell, so you could just drop DMSL.

Then apply similar logic to the other similar spells, like shroud of galubria, and phase shift. Fail% determines whether you lose the buff each check, spellpower determines whether it actually does its thing, or how well it does its thing.

Then do what I said before to haste.
Regen is fine as is, I think.


How is it boring to have a wand of repulsion? It at least places consideration upon rmsl as a resource.
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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 20:35

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Bart wrote:Making rMsl drain mana in a rate dependent on spellpower is the most acceptable version of this proposal, yet still not balanced. I cannot imagine young AE who would like to cast the spell early in the game and lose whole mana pool to a pack of kobolds with darts that would be otherwise harmful. Even if he could instantly turn the ability off (hello, another interface tedium), he would already be crippled by first blood effect. I doubt he should pay such price for using a spell which is supposed to be beneficial.

I don't like the kobolds example because kobolds with darts are entirely harmless. Let's take a real example, an early centaur. Repel missiles is really good against centaurs. The centaur can kill the player in 3 turns or a few turns more if the player dodges. Does the player activate repel missiles, even if it drains 2 mp per turn? Yes. Is it a nerf to repel missiles? Yes. But it's still worth using in this situation. That's what I would like to see with buff spells. They're worth using in the right situation, and not "always". Players shouldn't cast rmsl in a fight against dart throwing kobolds just because it only costs 2 mp and you might as well use it even though the darts will do like 3 damage total. That is also why interface would not be a problem, because you wouldn't use rmsl in every fight.

Your concern that spellcasting characters have less mp to work with for sustaining buff spells than melee characters is correct. I tried to address it in the last paragraph of my 1st post but there's probably a better solution.

archaeo wrote:except maybe for Haste, since I think there's nothing you can do at this point short of removing it that will really satisfy the people who loathe it.

First of all the haste spell is not too good, so the people who hate it should probably reevaluate their opinion. But don't you think that haste would be great spell with a 2 or 3 mp/turn cost? Using it for too long prevents the use of mp for anything else, including god abilities.

tabstorm wrote:Just remove the charms school, buff regen items, and create some item that allows you to evoke rmsl/dmsl that recharges based on XP or a "wand of repulsion". Change spectral weapon to not charms so that it remains in the game.

If there's any spell that should be kept it's certainly not spectral weapon. This one should be one of the first, if not the first to go. But removing charms and adding evocables is pretty offtopic, I would like to balance the buff spells and improve their design instead of removing them.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 20:46

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Well, I like the fact that some characters start with the spell in a book. I like the idea of 'durable buffs' that you earn by investing XP into certain skills, instead of investing that XP into getting better at killdudes or survivedudes.

The current issue which has been well identified for rmsl and rmsl alone is that the investment currently required is practically nothing, except willingness to do a few tedious tasks.
The other issue is of course, it's tedious, but beneficial to keep casting those spells if they're just based on a duration.
So I think making them statochastic, based on fail%, solves both issues, and I think tying their effectiveness to spellpower improves greatly upon them in general, while also moving them away from no-brainer territory.

Yes, moving them to wands does also fix the issue, but it also takes away another piece of player control over his character. I think that moves crawl toward a less fun game. I was joking about the 'objectively boring' thing, but I would personally find it less fun.

Ninjaedit: Haste isn't too powerful? Is that why every character ever (except trog followers) gets haste? 33% better at everything is a pretty nice buff. Being slightly restricted on how often you get to use the awesome buff isn't much of a downside.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 20:49

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Kramin42 wrote:What I am saying is that a naked, brainless, skill-less char will have only 75% failure rate, meaning you can get something for nothing (no XP cost). Having spell success effect the operation of the spell once cast is inconsistent and essentially the same as what FalconNL said anyway.

Actually, factoring the miscast rate into the equation rather than being entirely based on spell power is a significant difference: it means that the heavy armor penalty to spellcasting actually has a meaningful effect. With this change, I would even go so far as to suggest eliminating miscasts from actually casting the buff, so as to completely eliminate any motivation to switch gear for the sole purpose of refreshing them.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 20:52

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Is that why every character ever (except trog followers) gets haste?

you need to prove this, because that's not what happens (in particular I quite often don't learn it when playing crate_crawl because xp allocation actually matters there; in real crawl admittedly depths has so much xp that this is a bit less of a concern)

regardless of how you feel about haste's power level, it does have a very real xp investment to make it do anything other than give you miscast effects, and (in theory at least) it's not something you use in every fight since it gives you contam
you can argue about how well contam accomplishes the goal there, but with haste it's more a matter of tweaking the spell instead of dramatically redesigning it (unless you believe that haste effect should not be a spell at all, but of course that applies to any charm in crawl)

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 22:15

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:First of all the haste spell is not too good, so the people who hate it should probably reevaluate their opinion. But don't you think that haste would be great spell with a 2 or 3 mp/turn cost? Using it for too long prevents the use of mp for anything else, including god abilities.

No, that sounds like every time I use haste I have to slow my play down so that I can keep track of my mp turn by turn, and presumably it would mean that I would be able to turn off haste when I'm done so that means I'd also have to remember to hit a h or whatever to switch off haste. I assume you'd also be changing the contam costs of haste; if it had any at all, I would be trying to also remember how long I can haste before I start getting yellow contam, especially if I'm channeling. If it didn't, well, then you've just accomplished making haste even more of a problem, since I can just switch it on and off whenever I like.

No, I don't see this working Wahaha. I agree that haste isn't too good, but mp drain just seems like a solution in search of a problem. If the mp costs aren't too steep, you've just added a bunch of interface screws and even more fiddly play. If they're extremely steep, then it's just removal by another name, since everybody except ~*~hybrids~*~ and late-game Mi casting it in GDA just don't have the mp to spare.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 22:36

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

It is very simple to keep track of a 2 mp per turn drain. I can't emphasize how simple it is it more than that without using silly words, but seriously it's like keeping track of your hp but easier since you know how much mp is lost per turn. There would be no contam. That is not a problem because haste is limited by mp now. What is the problem with haste that can be turned on and off (that also isn't a problem with current haste)? It's also hardly an interface screw, it takes 1 turn to cast so you wouldn't be constantly turning it on and off during a fight. It is used once, and turned off once. As an example of this system working see Sil. There is no problem with the interface there. If the mp cost is something like 2 or 3 mp per turn as mentioned, it's useable by all characters (with no fiddly anything). In any case it's certainly less fiddly than mashing 5 to remove contam.
edit
mp drain just seems like a solution in search of a problem

Yes it has problems, but I'm sure it is possible to address the problems and make it work. The benefits would be worth it. I'm aware that this is never going to be implemented, but this is gdd so whatever, we can talk about it.

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Post Friday, 6th June 2014, 23:24

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:If the mp cost is something like 2 or 3 mp per turn as mentioned, it's useable by all characters (with no fiddly anything).


It would be useable by all melee and hybrid characters. It would be all but unusable for characters who primarily/only use spells. Over the course of a 10-round fight (not unreasonable for uniques or groups of enemies, which is exactly the kind of scenario where you'd be using haste) this would cost you 20-30 MP. That's half your mana pool. Or 3-5 Iron Shots. Or 4-6 Fireballs. I'd rather spend the mana on things that actually killdudes rather than killing half the dudes (or 1 unique halfway) and running out of steam.

Admittedly, playing a pure caster is a suboptimal strategy. So why bother nerfing them even further? As we've already concluded melee and hybrid characters generally don't care about MP anyway, so the change wouldn't affect them much. Which leaves me to wonder what would be gained by this change.
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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 00:38

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Your example is not accurate. A 10 turn (100 aut) hasted fight is unreasonable. That's 14 actions. A character with 45 mp, after casting haste (39 mp), can cast a level 6 spell 6 times (6 actions = 4.2 turns). Far from 10 turns. With 3 mp per 10 aut drain, the same player runs out of mp after 5 casts. 1 spell cast less. The main difference is that with mp drain, the haste status goes away when the player runs out of mp. Which is a nerf. But not one that really affects killing ability, which is what your argument is about. It's a nerf that affects smart usage of the spell, instead of just casting it whenever.

But it seems like you either didn't read the whole thread or are intentionally ignoring things that were said. I did say that spellcasters are disadvantaged more than melee characters by mp drain, and that is something that might need fixing, and a solution was proposed too.

Also the idea that mp drain wouldn't affect melee/hybrid characters doesn't make sense due to a few reasons. One of them is in the 1st post: a character can't use multiple buffs for a decently long period of time regardless of character archetype. The assumption that melee/hybrid characters don't need mp at all is also false, because many god abilities cost mp, sometimes a lot of mp. Some evocables also cost mp. This change is pretty huge for these characters, just not as much as for ~casters~, and the change isn't meant to fuck over ~casters~. That is something that should be fixed.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 00:45

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:Your example is not accurate. A 10 turn (100 aut) hasted fight is unreasonable. That's 14 actions. A character with 45 mp, after casting haste (39 mp), can cast a level 6 spell 6 times (6 actions = 4.2 turns). Far from 10 turns. With 3 mp per 10 aut drain, the same player runs out of mp after 5 casts. 1 spell cast less. The main difference is that with mp drain, the haste status goes away when the player runs out of mp. Which is a nerf. But not one that really affects killing ability, which is what your argument is about. It's a nerf that affects smart usage of the spell, instead of just casting it whenever.

You overlook things like positioning, use of items, channeling, god abilities, mixing in melee attacks when appropriate, and the fact this change would mean that if you're not the type to go all-in, your killing ability is greatly affected in that you have to reserve 20 MP if you want to be able to run away using the Haste effect to put distance between yourself and the enemy.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 00:51

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I did not overlook positioning and use of items. That falls under "smart usage of the spell". It means you can't just cast haste sometime at the start of the fight and expect it to last it pretty much forever. You have to make good/smart use of it. Same for reserving mp to run away. In the example I was going to say "let's assume that the player does not have bad positioning, and won't need to reposition between spell casts" but decided not to.

There is no getting around the fact that this is a nerf though, so yeah, it is. But in my opinion it makes haste and other buff spells a lot more interesting to use.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 02:57

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

The good/smart way to approach that version of haste would surely be to not learn it (unless maybe you have a large MP pool that you don't use for any other purpose). It already costs a lot of XP for an effect that replicates a wand and a potion, if it replicated a vastly inferior version of those consumables then I don't see how it would be worth in most cases.

e: well I guess it might be broken if you allowed channeling to give you infinite haste

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 03:17

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:I did not overlook positioning and use of items. That falls under "smart usage of the spell". It means you can't just cast haste sometime at the start of the fight and expect it to last it pretty much forever. You have to make good/smart use of it. Same for reserving mp to run away. In the example I was going to say "let's assume that the player does not have bad positioning, and won't need to reposition between spell casts" but decided not to.

There is no getting around the fact that this is a nerf though, so yeah, it is. But in my opinion it makes haste and other buff spells a lot more interesting to use.

I think you are underestimating just how badly you're nerfing the spell. For the low low cost of 12 MP, you can squeeze three 10-Aut actions into 30 Auts! Haste is a terrible spell if it can't be maintained for a significant amount of time.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 05:05

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I think the idea in the OP is a reasonable one. It's significantly better than other charms-alterations (including the one that was actually made to rmsl/dmsl) that I've seen suggested here--importantly, it means that you both do not want to have charms active at all times and additionally must cast them near encounters (this solves the heavy-armour-problem except near stairs, but stairs are problematic like that currently also--you can cast haste just fine at 60% fail if you're on stairs and want it for the encounter at the bottom). My personal biggest objection is the need to cancel every charm spell when you're done with it, which is obviously a big annoyance and an interface problem. I don't have a good idea to solve this. (It might be worth noting that currently all transmutation forms have this exact problem.)

If we ignore that (which is admittedly a large thing to ignore!) then the objections I've seen brought up pretty much boil down to "I want charms to remain absurdly good for all characters"; I don't personally agree with this stance and making charms appeal specifically to characters with larger/otherwise-less-useful MP pools is a completely reasonable direction to go, imo.

Getting hung up on the numbers is a sign you're not actually doing much thinking about this as an idea. Of course, if you do go down to less-than-1-mp-per-action costs, then there's some oddness with wanting to keep track of exactly when the buff drains each 1 MP, but I think that's less of a problem than the current situation.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 07:01

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

If you don't want people to get hung up on the actual numbers used, you should probably use an example that doesn't have absurdly bad numbers.

The proposal is basically similar to guardian spirit, only slotless. A character that has no active, in-battle use for mp should definitely pick the spell up if it has a reasonable xp investment because it's turning a useless excess resource into a useful resource. A character that does actively use mp in battle as the core of their build should probably never pick up this spell unless the guardian spirit effect is so mild that there is functionally no change from the status quo, because unpredictably losing access to your most important ability is unacceptably bad.

While there are problems with charms, I don't think an uneven nerf that misses some of the builds that needs that nerf the most really does what needs to be done.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 07:46

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I do like the idea of buffs draining MP's.
The buffs should still have maximum duration based on spellpower. So the buff wears off when duration is over or if you ran out of MP.
I think this would encourage people to plan more carefully when using buffs.

ps. And since this is sliding to be another haste thread... As I see it there a 2 groups. One says haste if too powerful and should be removed of heavily neffed. Other says haste is not so good in the first place. Isn't it then logical just to remove it? If it's too powerfull that solves the problem for group 1 and if it's not so good, then group 2 will not miss it that much.
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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 11:23

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Zammy wrote:As I see it there a 2 groups. One says haste if too powerful and should be removed of heavily neffed. Other says haste is not so good in the first place.


There's at least one more: the group who thinks haste is just fine as it is. Haste serves two purposes: temporarily improving your killdudes and allowing speed 10 characters (i.e. most of them) to run away from a fight that has gone sour.

Gaining these two useful abilities requires an investment in armour choice and/or XP investment. On my current CeHu I can choose between wearing my +7 platemail or wearing leather armor and being able to cast haste. Casting haste in plate would require quite a few more levels in armour and charms, which are currently better spent in long blades to get my claymore of electrocution to mindelay, as that achieves the same attack speed improvement, but permanently. Haste is not the no-brainer everyone makes it out to be.

Keeping haste up all the time is already prevented by the glow mechanic. The only scummy behaviour that haste encourages is taking off your heavy armour, casting haste and putting it back on, and even that carries the slight risk of monsters wandering up just as you've taken off your armor.

I see little reason to mess with the current implementation of haste.
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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 13:15

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I just think that buffs in general should scale a lot more from spellpower. With this I mean the effect itself, not just duration. Stoneskin is a nice example of this.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 13:45

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Stoneskin and Ozo don't "scale with spellpower", they just take your Earth/Ice skill numbers.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 13:49

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Sar wrote:Stoneskin and Ozo don't "scale with spellpower", they just take your Earth/Ice skill numbers.


Well maybe the wording was bad, but that is pretty close of what I meant. The higher the skill, the better the effect.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 13:57

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

crate wrote:I don't personally agree with this stance and making charms appeal specifically to characters with larger/otherwise-less-useful MP pools is a completely reasonable direction to go, imo.

This seems backwards; aren't the usual complaints precisely that charms are a "no-brainer" for precisely those characters?

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 14:23

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Hurkyl wrote:
crate wrote:I don't personally agree with this stance and making charms appeal specifically to characters with larger/otherwise-less-useful MP pools is a completely reasonable direction to go, imo.

This seems backwards; aren't the usual complaints precisely that charms are a "no-brainer" for precisely those characters?

Wearing armour is also a "no-brainer" for characters, and that's not a problem. Eating food is a "no-brainer". Sticking with Trog on a berserker is a "no-brainer" (except people manage to mess this one up from time to time anyway!). Just because using a certain thing on a character is better than not using that thing is not a problem.

The biggest problem with charms has nothing to do with their power level, though yes it is additionally true (and not the point of this thread) that charms are really really good, probably better than they should be. The fact that this proposal makes them worse is a side effect, not the main idea.

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Post Saturday, 7th June 2014, 22:31

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

It seems to me that the largest reason low level charms are problematic, is that you can regenerate the MP used to cast them in less time than it takes for them to wear off, this means that it's optimal to have them on *all the time*

If charm's durations were capped at slightly less than the time it takes to recover the MP to cast them, then it wouldn't be optimal to have them on all the time, as you'd just be slowly burning up your MP for no benefit.

High level, short-duration charms (say, phase shift) don't have this problem at all, because the MP required doesn't regen quickly enough to use it all the time.

This is true regardless of whether the individual charm spell is over- or underpowered relative to it's XP investment (Which is a separate issue altogether but one that needs to be addressed on a spell-by-spell basis)

Charging more mana "over time" rather than up front just complicates things with no net benefit, and a tactical ability (That you don't want to use all the time) that you have to turn on then turn off again manually just doubles the amount of work the player has to do,
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Post Sunday, 8th June 2014, 00:07

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Siegurt wrote:High level, short-duration charms (say, phase shift) don't have this problem at all, because the MP required doesn't regen quickly enough to use it all the time.

As an aside, I just did some testing since this conflicts with my recollection. With enough spell power and max MP, you can actually keep Phase Shift up continuously. Even at lower spell power and max MP, you can keep it up for a very long time.

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Post Monday, 9th June 2014, 16:17

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

It seems to me that the largest reason low level charms are problematic, is that you can regenerate the MP used to cast them in less time than it takes for them to wear off, this means that it's optimal to have them on *all the time*

This has nothing, literally nothing, to do with why I find low-level charms problematic. Rmsl is much much much much more problematic than Dmsl, even though both have infinite duration and Dmsl provides a dramatically stronger effect.

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Post Wednesday, 11th June 2014, 06:16

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

TheDefiniteArticle wrote:
It seems to me that the largest reason low level charms are problematic, is that you can regenerate the MP used to cast them in less time than it takes for them to wear off, this means that it's optimal to have them on *all the time*

This has nothing, literally nothing, to do with why I find low-level charms problematic. Rmsl is much much much much more problematic than Dmsl, even though both have infinite duration and Dmsl provides a dramatically stronger effect.

So why do you find them problematic?
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Post Wednesday, 11th June 2014, 13:01

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I think the problem with Rmsl is you get a very effective buff for 0 investment, except the annoyance of taking off your armor outside of battle.
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