Buff spells drain mp while active


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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Wednesday, 11th June 2014, 17:01

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

damiac wrote: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.

To be clear is in the 0 investment (Well, really "negligible investment"), or the taking off your armour that's the problem (After all, we have consumables that give good buffs for 0 investment as well)

Or is it some combination; Like would it be a good spell if you had to train everything to 10 *and* had to remove your armour to cast it? Would it be a good spell if you didn't have to invest skill points in it, but it didn't work if you had anything heavier than leather on?
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Post Wednesday, 11th June 2014, 20:10

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Well, as I see it, the issue is that every non-trog character ever should get Rmsl, and they can cast it, and thus have permanent Rmsl, without investing a single point in charms or air.

Using consumable is the investment in using consumables. You lose 1 might potion, you get 1 might buff temporarily. Rmsl can always be cast again. The only investment is time.

The armor removal aspect only makes matters worse. Now, if i want to play optimally, I should always have Rmsl up, provided I have found the spell. To accomplish this goal, whenever i am out of combat, and Rmsl isn't active, I should remove my armor, thus taking my spell failure rate below 100, and then repeatedly cast Rmsl until it sticks. Then I should put my armor back on, and rest until my MP is full.

That's an exercise in tediousness, but it's optimal currently.

Now, there's actually two issues there.
Issue 1 is that I can get pretty much full use of this spell so long as my failure rate is below 100%
Issue 2 is that to get my failure rate below 100%, all I have to do is be willing to do some tedious armor removal.


I think to be a 'good spell', the chance of losing the spell effect per hit should be based upon failure %, instead of spellpower, thus, armor removal outside of combat doesn't help.

Although we're talking about the 0 investment scenario, there are other scenarios that are problematic as well. For example, I can;t just take a guy who can cast fireball in robes, stick heavy armor on him, and expect to be able to cast fireball still. Sure, I can take that armor off outside of combat and cast fireball, but that does me no good at all.
But a similar scenario with DMSL or RMSL, where my guy can cast it fine in robes, and not in armor, means I just cast it outside combat without armor on, then enjoy the effects in combat, with my armor back on.

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Post Wednesday, 11th June 2014, 20:53

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Your assertion that it is tedious but optimal to strip off your plate armour in Zot 5 in order to cast Repel Missiles without spending as much xp… is highly questionable, to say the least.

Even under the questionable assumption you reliably have a nearby level that has already been farmed until it no longer produces monsters, piety decay is still a thing for almost all deities, and I'm struggling to come up with scenarios where it is a good idea to let it do so. I'd really rather spend my piety using divine abilities.

Probably the armor removal loophole should be closed, but that's because it's dumb, not because it's optimal.

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Post Wednesday, 11th June 2014, 21:35

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Armour removal problem can be fixed by forceful removal of RMsl whenever character puts on body armour.
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Post Wednesday, 11th June 2014, 23:06

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

"Taking off/Putting on your armour disrupts the repelling/deflecting field!"

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 02:09

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Armour also has nothing to do with Rmsl problems. If you have even vaguely decent spellpower it is easily castable in most armour. And since you are also getting Haste, Rmsl is easily castable in all armour, lawl.

Armour removal actually matters for Dmsl, but it is a minor problem. Infinite duration on a powerful buff is a much bigger problem.

So why do you find them problematic?

Rmsl:
A) Is extremely powerful, one of my most valued spells when preparing for Zot
B) Does nothing interesting
C) Has no significant cost

When I find Rmsl, and I'm trying to decide if I should memorize it, the ONLY question I ask myself is "In a typical combat situation, will this character consider it worthwhile to devote time to activating this buff?" You might notice that with infinite duration Rmsl, this question changes into a fucking joke. The punchline is that since that change, every non-Trog character I play that finds Rmsl memorizes it at the first available turn regardless of skills or other available spells, and never ever forgets it except in the rare case of finding and deciding to use Dmsl.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 05:30

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Personally i like the mechanic of having buff spells "reserve" max MP as long as they're active.

But for RMsl something else is needed:
What if it would reduce accuracy of your melee/ranged attacks and targeted spells.
It would be "permanent" like now, and cancelling it would take 1 aut. Changing any part of armor (body armor, shield, helmet) would also cancel it. Jewelry or weapon changes would not have effect.
This would make it clearly defensive ability that would be used only when needed (like when a footaur pack comes to view), with a meaningful trade-off (the deflection field disturbs your attacks).
DMsl would be the same, but without accuracy penalties (like now).

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 08:28

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

hannobal wrote:But for RMsl something else is needed:
What if it would reduce accuracy of your melee/ranged attacks and targeted spells.
It would be "permanent" like now, and cancelling it would take 1 aut. Changing any part of armor (body armor, shield, helmet) would also cancel it. Jewelry or weapon changes would not have effect.
This would make it clearly defensive ability that would be used only when needed (like when a footaur pack comes to view), with a meaningful trade-off (the deflection field disturbs your attacks).
DMsl would be the same, but without accuracy penalties (like now).


Good idea, this drawback could make using RMsl a nontrivial decision. The accurarcy penalty should probably scale with spellpower, so if I find RMsl with zero spellcasting skills, then it really kills accuracy, but it gives much lower penalties to the AE who was unlucky and dind't find DMsl yet.

I would also suggest that cancelling it should be done by recasting the spell -- if other permanent buffs are implemented giving each a separate cancel 'a'bilility would be too much; and if the buff is permanent, casting it while it is active does nothing. Probably these cancel casting shouldn't cost mana, maybe they should only apply on 'Z' casting.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 13:23

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

KoboldLord wrote:Your assertion that it is tedious but optimal to strip off your plate armour in Zot 5 in order to cast Repel Missiles without spending as much xp… is highly questionable, to say the least.

Even under the questionable assumption you reliably have a nearby level that has already been farmed until it no longer produces monsters, piety decay is still a thing for almost all deities, and I'm struggling to come up with scenarios where it is a good idea to let it do so. I'd really rather spend my piety using divine abilities.

Probably the armor removal loophole should be closed, but that's because it's dumb, not because it's optimal.


Well ok, I don't know why you feel the need to assume when I said 'out of combat' I meant 'In the stupidest possible place, out of combat'. Where did I say say I was going to take off my armor in Zot 5? That's what we call a 'strawman'.

Are you telling me you don't try on ego armor in orc? Since you can't spare the turns it takes to remove and wear plate mail, I guess you must just stick with the robes or leather you started with. So your assertion is that one should only do Zot5 in the armor they started the game with? Hey look, I can make strawmen too!

So yeah, if I cannot cast Rmsl, or Dmsl in my armor, and I can cast it without, I'll go to a safe place (this probably does not include zot 5) remove my armor, cast it, and put my armor back on. If rmsl or Dmsl blocks a couple bolt spells from hitting me, it was already worth the tiny piety drop I may have taken, depending on the god I may be worshipping, assuming I even have a use for that piety.

So yeah, it is optimal. Doing this for Rmsl is a corner case, and a small part of the issue. Dmsl is probably more problematic, from an armor removing standpoint.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 16:09

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

damiac wrote:If rmsl or Dmsl blocks a couple bolt spells from hitting me


I don't know about you, but if I'm running a plate character, I don't worry too much about a couple stray ranged attacks. That's what my 30+ AC is for. Occasionally I might get a stairwell in a perfect location, but in the general case I'd rather draw yaktaurs or draconians to terrain of my choosing rather than run constant escort missions trying to babysit an active spell through an entire level where any trivial ranged attack that can't even breach my AC will make the spell collapse collapse and force me to start the escort mission all over from the beginning. Babysitting Repel Missiles isn't going to save you from an ancient lich or an orb of fire's ranged attacks, but waiting around a corner will.

Look, if you wanted to argue that Repel Missiles is too good, I'd certainly be willing to get on board with that. If it's available it will be one of the first spells I train for on pretty much every character who doesn't start with a spellbook. Double EV against ranged attacks is pretty stupid-good. But the theorycrawl 'exploit' you are claiming doesn't help your argument. If the surrounding area is so non-threatening that your plate character can afford to strip and not have to worry about surprise titans spawning in inconvenient places and showing up while you're naked, then the surrounding area is non-threatening and you might as well just kill the non-threatening monsters without Repel Missiles.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 16:56

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

KoboldLord wrote:
damiac wrote:If rmsl or Dmsl blocks a couple bolt spells from hitting me


Babysitting Repel Missiles isn't going to save you from an ancient lich or an orb of fire's ranged attacks


KoboldLord wrote:I don't know about you, but if I'm running a plate character, I don't worry too much about a couple stray ranged attacks. That's what my 30+ AC is for.



Yeah, 30 AC will completely stop Alich LCS, Iron Shot, Icicle, and bolt of draining. 3d48? No problem for 30 AC. OOF firebolt is only 3D40, why even wear armor?
I forgot, it's not worth 24 turns worth of piety to prevent potentially 100+ damage per hit.
Yeah, Zot5 on an upstairs, or a cleared zot4 is totally as dangerous as the zot5 lungs.
And after all, rmsl and dmsl only work in Zot.
Oh wait, no. Those things aren't true.

You're claiming that taking off your armor, casting dmsl, and putting your armor back on is not optimal? Well you're wrong. We regularly waste tons of turns, kiting dangerous monsters back to explored territory, 1 by 1. It's already established that it's very much optimal to 'waste turns' to lower the danger level of encounters (Commonly known as 'Crate's Law'). Or are you now saying because of the potential piety loss, one should just charge headlong into groups of enemies?

I'm sorry, I'm not even sure what you're arguing, it seems that you're just determined to be contrary, while still somehow agreeing with the basic premise. But pretty much everything you've said in the last couple posts is dead wrong. Even going with your utterly fallacious reasoning, you're still wrong.
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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 17:08

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I always have the worst ideas, so it's about time I chimed in with my opinion on this thread.

RE: BUFF SPELLS DRAINING MP
I like the concept of the buff spells draining MP (or otherwise affecting the rate of MP regeneration) during their duration. This is a proper cost for maintaining spells and applied properly can be used to eliminate contam or slow.

Here's how I'd do it:

1) Maintain the initial MP investment (standard spell cost) to activate the given spell; this is the amount it costs to enter the state of "buff" till the first MP drain. Possibly reduce the spell level of some spells.

2) Have the amount of MP drained be based around the MP cost to cast the spell, enhanced (reduced) by some combined factor of Spellcasting, Int, and related Magic School(s), with emphasis on Magic School(s) Skill.

3) Have the frequency of MP drain be a number of turns set to some amount based on the level of the spell (10 - the spell level, perhaps, reduced by some factor), increased by some combined factor of Spellcasting, Int and Magic Schools, with emphasis on Spellcasting Skill.

With this methodology, you can improve both the amount of MP drained and the frequency of the MP drain through applied skill investment.

RE: RMSL vs DMSL
This is another thread entirely and a moderator should cull that discussion.
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 19:27

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

damiac wrote:You're claiming that taking off your armor, casting dmsl, and putting your armor back on is not optimal? Well you're wrong. We regularly waste tons of turns, kiting dangerous monsters back to explored territory, 1 by 1. It's already established that it's very much optimal to 'waste turns' to lower the danger level of encounters (Commonly known as 'Crate's Law'). Or are you now saying because of the potential piety loss, one should just charge headlong into groups of enemies?


Swapping body armour is potentially deadly. Crate's Law is fine and dandy, but it doesn't apply when the proposed method of mitigating the danger of enemies creates a greater amount of danger. Fresh monsters spawn, wandering monsters can be overlooked, and a teleport trap across the level can drop threats into areas that you thought were secure. Swapping body armour is always going to be a calculated risk when you do it, and usually you can make it safe, but when you take that same calculated risk for every fight even when it isn't necessary? That's a dumb risk.

Piety loss is a different sort of calculation, which I brought up because one of Makhleb's demons or Okawaru's Finesse is a clearly superior way to handle the possibility of an ancient lich being present than suicidally stripping off your body armour with the possibility of an ancient lich being present.

Have you even tried doing this, by the way? I've been interrupted while resting off-level for hp/mp/contam purposes frequently enough that I wouldn't even consider taking off body armour in those same circumstances. If by some chance you do have actual hard data, I'd at least take a look at it.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 19:55

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Not this exact scenario, I typically have enough charms to cast in my armor anyway, but yes, I've done armor swapping in depths at least, trying on different plate mail or whatever garbage armor Oka threw at me last. Once in a while, something might spawn in, that's why I generally do it on an upstair. I do think it's well worth the pretty small risk to get Dmsl up rather than the larger risk of going up against dangerous ranged attackers without Dmsl.

Note that in all cases, for armor swapping to be a good idea, you need to be in a relatively clear area. I wouldn't clear a zot lung, notice my Dmsl was down, and just strip my armor off right there. And situationally, there are times where it would probably be better to just continue on without dmsl rather than backtracking and removing armor. Being in a zot lung is probably one of those times.

On the other hand, if I had just cleared snake 4, it's probably a very good idea to go to an upstair, strip my armor, cast my dmsl or rmsl, and put my armor back on before descending to snake 5. Admittedly, it's not entirely without risk, but I think in that case the benefits far outweigh the risks.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 20:31

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Maybe it's not worth going to a safe place and removing your armour just for rmsl. Okay, but how about if you now get rmsl, stoneskin, phase shift, shroud of golubria, portal projectile, regeneration, and condensation shield? The fact that rmsl/dmsl is the only spell that uses its mechanic masks one of the largest problems with that mechanic, and making it apply to more spells makes the problem more clear.

Of course, just because a problem tends to be hidden does not mean it's not a problem.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 22:14

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

crate wrote:Maybe it's not worth going to a safe place and removing your armour just for rmsl. Okay, but how about if you now get rmsl, stoneskin, phase shift, shroud of golubria, portal projectile, regeneration, and condensation shield? The fact that rmsl/dmsl is the only spell that uses its mechanic masks one of the largest problems with that mechanic, and making it apply to more spells makes the problem more clear.

Of course, just because a problem tends to be hidden does not mean it's not a problem.


How about re-framing the example to involve hot-swapping wizardry equipment to cast Repel Missiles? I would have never said anything if the example involved a ring swap and/or a weapon swap before every combat, because those are things you can do without leaving yourself with crippled defenses for far too many aut, and it's easy to see how it can be argued that this version of the example could be a problem. The plate-swapping version is just too far out there to take seriously.

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Post Thursday, 12th June 2014, 22:19

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

crate wrote:Maybe it's not worth going to a safe place and removing your armour just for rmsl. Okay, but how about if you now get rmsl, stoneskin, phase shift, shroud of golubria, portal projectile, regeneration, and condensation shield? The fact that rmsl/dmsl is the only spell that uses its mechanic masks one of the largest problems with that mechanic, and making it apply to more spells makes the problem more clear.

Of course, just because a problem tends to be hidden does not mean it's not a problem.


Solution:

Buffs should always cast successfully, because out-of-combat spell failure chances are mainly just annoying.
However, every time a buff is used ("The arrow is repelled," etc.), it should first have a chance of wearing off based on its current spell failure.

If you need to quaff !brillance, swap =wiz, and remove your plate to get DMsl up, then it'll vanish anyway before the first bolt hits you.
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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 00:03

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

KoboldLord wrote:
crate wrote:Maybe it's not worth going to a safe place and removing your armour just for rmsl. Okay, but how about if you now get rmsl, stoneskin, phase shift, shroud of golubria, portal projectile, regeneration, and condensation shield? The fact that rmsl/dmsl is the only spell that uses its mechanic masks one of the largest problems with that mechanic, and making it apply to more spells makes the problem more clear.

Of course, just because a problem tends to be hidden does not mean it's not a problem.


How about re-framing the example to involve hot-swapping wizardry equipment to cast Repel Missiles? I would have never said anything if the example involved a ring swap and/or a weapon swap before every combat, because those are things you can do without leaving yourself with crippled defenses for far too many aut, and it's easy to see how it can be argued that this version of the example could be a problem. The plate-swapping version is just too far out there to take seriously.

selling items to shops wouldn't actually have much (or any!) benefit in most crawl games, either--you typically have more gold than you want to spend--yet it is explicitly stated in the manual as an example of grindy behaviour
this seems exactly the same type of behaviour to me (and the fact that wizardry-swapping for charms is beneficial is something I also see as problematic, though less so): you do something that in theory has benefits (you get more gold, you get more buffs) even if in practice you did not need those benefits; and the cost is lots of player time and incentivising things that are not "progress forward with the main point of the game".

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 02:34

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Buffs should always cast successfully, because out-of-combat spell failure chances are mainly just annoying.
However, every time a buff is used ("The arrow is repelled," etc.), it should first have a chance of wearing off based on its current spell failure.

As I explained in a previous thread, the problem is "this spell is useful outside of combat". Making the spell less useful during combat does not even address the problem! It is like if I told you "your son drives drunk on a regular basis" and you responded "I'll stock the fridge with Lite beer from now on."

To put it bluntly, spells that are useful outside of combat SHOULD NOT EXIST

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 12:55

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

TheDefiniteArticle wrote:
To put it bluntly, spells that are useful outside of combat SHOULD NOT EXIST


So... remove flight and cure poison? Make regen not work out of combat? Blink, control teleport, sublimation of blood...

There's a lot of room for spells to work out of combat. That isn't the problem at all.
The problem is that the semi-permenant buff system being tried out with Rmsl and Dmsl doesn't really mesh at all with the way crawl has seperate spell failure and spell power. It almost makes spell failure meaningless. Since spell failure is THE mechanic for limiting a caster's armor choice, ignoring it obviously creates problems.

The solution is obvious, if you're going to make a new mechanic to remove a tedious aspect of the game (casting rmsl or dmsl every time they expire, basically cost free) you've got to rework how it interacts with a basic part of the spellcasting system. Spell failure works fine as that limiter, if the spell expires on its own anyway. If the spell does not expire on its own, and in fact, expires based on spellpower, you've got to find a way to tie in spell failure in a meaningful way.

So, to present the obvious solution again, just have Rmsl and Dmsl expire, per hit, based on spell failure. To deal with the fact that we just made spell power meaningless for these spells, rework their effect to be scaled based on spellpower. Hey look at that, all Rmsl and Dmsl problems were just solved. In fact, better than solved, because now spell power actually matters, where it barely did before.

Then you could consider what other buffs could use that same mechanic. Shroud of Galubria seems like an obvious one to me. Phase shift is debatable, it would work with the system easily enough, but it's questionable how problematic it is now, regarding recasting constantly out of combat. Stone skin and Oza's armor could probably get the same treatment, having a chance to expire per hit, as they are spells one would typically keep up constantly.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 14:52

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

If Repel Missiles gave a bonus to EV based on spell power, the wizardry-swap issue would no longer be a problem because the bonus in those circumstances would be 0. It really boggles me that a level 2 spell can double your effective EV against most dangerous attacks with no additional investment and this is just passed over. The level 5 Phase Shift gives you a bonus of +8, but it's totally okay for level 2 Repel Missiles to give +10 or +20 or more.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 16:18

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

So... remove flight and cure poison? Make regen not work out of combat? Blink, control teleport, sublimation of blood...

Flight, Cure Poison, and Control Teleport are all AWFUL spells, that yes, absolutely should be removed with extreme prejudice.

Regen only works when your HP is less than full, and that only happens DURING combat. Sublimation of Blood is the same (although chunk Sublimation is awful for unrelated reasons).

Blink is a more complicated case that goes beyond the scope of this thread.

So, to present the obvious solution again, just have Rmsl and Dmsl expire, per hit, based on spell failure. To deal with the fact that we just made spell power meaningless for these spells, rework their effect to be scaled based on spellpower. Hey look at that, all Rmsl and Dmsl problems were just solved. In fact, better than solved, because now spell power actually matters, where it barely did before.

That doesn't solve the problem at all, in any way. But I appreciate the way you entirely ignored my explanation of exactly that.

Spell failure doesn't matter for a level 2 spell. Spellpower is a much better limiter on such a spell, and guess what, Rmsl already uses spellpower.

Spellpower currently matters a lot for Rmsl, by the way. It just doesn't create any decisions. Memorizing the spell is a 'no-brainer' even if you don't train Charms, but now that you have one of the best spells in the game memorized, training Charms to make that spell stronger is also a 'no-brainer'. I assume people saying spellpower doesn't matter for Rmsl don't actually know how the spell works, as that was the ONLY benefit of the change to infinite duration.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 17:54

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

TheDefiniteArticle wrote:
So, to present the obvious solution again, just have Rmsl and Dmsl expire, per hit, based on spell failure. To deal with the fact that we just made spell power meaningless for these spells, rework their effect to be scaled based on spellpower. Hey look at that, all Rmsl and Dmsl problems were just solved. In fact, better than solved, because now spell power actually matters, where it barely did before.

That doesn't solve the problem at all, in any way. But I appreciate the way you entirely ignored my explanation of exactly that.

I looked through this whole thread twice, and I don't see any explanation from you of why that doesn't solve the problem. All I see is you saying what you think the problem is, without any solution. You don't even explain why the problem you see is a problem.


TheDefiniteArticle wrote:I assume people saying spellpower doesn't matter for Rmsl don't actually know how the spell works, as that was the ONLY benefit of the change to infinite duration.

This is true, at least for me. I was under the belief that spellpower only increased duration for Rmsl. But, that doesn't change my opinion on what the solution is. If you'd care to explain what I apparently missed, maybe I'll see where you're coming from.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 18:03

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

TheDefiniteArticle wrote:Flight, Cure Poison, and Control Teleport are all AWFUL spells, that yes, absolutely should be removed with extreme prejudice.


I just can't help thinking that if controlled teleport is awful it is the games fault and not the effects. It has been a great tool in every single game that has it, both in computer aswel in rolepleying games that I have ever played.

And why is flight bad? Removing it would require change of shoals at least, since some places would become inaccessible. There is really no difference whatsoever berween flight spell and the effect drawn from a ring. Both are buffs with limitless use. Ring just makes it more tedious since you need to swap it. And isn't everything tedious bad?

That being said, I stronglt believe that out-of-combat spells shoudl exist. Of course if devs can't make them work in a sensible/balanced way that is a whole different story.
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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 18:26

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

how about just raising the level of rMsl (or removing it if it gets too close to dMsl)

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 19:23

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Well, I have no idea if devs are still reading this thread, but I'd probably just

1.) Merge dmsl and rmsl into one level 4 or level 5 spell.* Keep the spell power dependence, lose the indefinite duration.
2.) All buffs (charms or not) give some degree of contamination upon casting, which scales up quickly with repeated short term use. Exceptions: forms, berserk, probably swiftness, probably warp weapon and excruciating wounds, the effects from agility/might/brilliance, and most divine buffs that cost piety (all of these have other limiting/balancing factors). Probably some others that I'm forgetting won't need to give contamination.
3.) Probably make glow indication a bit more fine-grained to give more info about current glow, since it will now be a more important mechanic.
4.) All buff spells that give contamination indicate how much glow they give with a bar, similar to hunger costs or whatever.

Yes you can rest off contamination and keep recasting to keep some of these effects up constantly, but piety decay (for nearly all characters) and increased chances of monsters wandering into LOS from this additional resting should be sufficient that this behavior is not actually optimal, nor even all that reasonable, even just from a "winning the game" perspective.

* Should add some other spell to replace rmsl in Book of Minor Magic; the Book of Air that AEs start with could probably just get the level 4 or 5 spell that would result from the dmsl/rmsl merge.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 20:39

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

TheDefiniteArticle wrote:
Buffs should always cast successfully, because out-of-combat spell failure chances are mainly just annoying.
However, every time a buff is used ("The arrow is repelled," etc.), it should first have a chance of wearing off based on its current spell failure.

As I explained in a previous thread, the problem is "this spell is useful outside of combat". Making the spell less useful during combat does not even address the problem! It is like if I told you "your son drives drunk on a regular basis" and you responded "I'll stock the fridge with Lite beer from now on."

To put it bluntly, spells that are useful outside of combat SHOULD NOT EXIST

Okay, I'm boggled. Things have gotten convoluted enough that either I'm confused as to what you're arguing, or you are.

Repel Missiles is not useful out of combat. It only does stuff when things are firing missiles at you.

Some (you?) have argued that a problem with Repel Missiles is that if you find it, you can just memorize it and use it without any investment at all. Making the spell less useful in combat if you don't actually invest anything into making the spell good is addressing that problem.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 20:40

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

it is useful to cast it out of combat, that is the problem

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 21:01

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

If it had a permanent duration, it wouldn't be useful to cast out of combat either, since you don't need to cast it at all. :)

It strikes me that this discussion is polarized by the bias against blaster characters. Characters whose primary means of defense is "kill it (or run away) before it gets to me" really cannot afford to waste time casting buffs during combat -- every proposal that tries to push buffs to combat-castable only is a nerf on this style of play.

Furthermore, it seems the model that some have centered their thinking on is that physical combat is the staple that every character should be focused on, and spells should be reserved for special uses or as a substitute for ranged weaponry.

I strongly encourage a different paradigm: light amounts of both physical and magical combat should be readily accessible to all characters. From a gameplay perspective, it simply doesn't make any sense that a character should be happy to find any 1 AC auxiliary items he finds lying around the dungeon (even if he hasn't even bothered training Armour yet), and be able to make good use of a good weapon found on the floor (even if he hasn't even bothered training the weapon skill yet), but have a book of low level magic be completely useless to the character unless it wants to invest several levels of experience to it.

(this does make sense if you cling to the traditional separation of might and magic, but surely this forum doesn't encourage doing such a thing, does it? :lol: )

Having a low level buff like Repel Missiles being useful to nearly every character is a good thing. Especially if you can get the effect without having to waste a turn in the middle of combat.

If the actual effect of permanent Repel Missiles is so strong it breaks the game, then the solution should be to reduce level of effect, rather than trying to nerf the magical side of the game into oblivion.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 21:18

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Hurkyl wrote:If it had a permanent duration, it wouldn't be useful to cast out of combat either, since you don't need to cast it at all. :)


"Spells that can give you powerful benefits by casting them outside of combat are problematic." Is that sufficiently excruciatingly precise?

Hurkyl wrote:It strikes me that this discussion is polarized by the bias against blaster characters.


That doesn't have anything to do with this discussion. Quite the opposite—most people have been saying that a big part of the problem with rmsl in its current state is that dudes who have nothing, or very little, invested in magic can significantly improve their defenses.

Hurkyl wrote:Characters whose primary means of defense is "kill it (or run away) before it gets to me"


This description applies to every character though. Well technically not those that worship Ely (and to a lesser extent Lugonu), I suppose, but pacify and banish are functionally very similar to "kill it." You want to minimize the number of times something attacks you; sometimes you can do that before it reaches you, sometimes you cannot, and sometimes you shouldn't (because it would take limited resources to do so and you judge that the "it," in this case, doesn't warrant use of those resources). But in all cases you would ideally want to kill every enemy before it gets a chance to attack.

Hurkyl wrote: I strongly encourage a different paradigm: light amounts of both physical and magical combat should be readily accessible to all characters.


I agree, and so do Crawl developers, because this is already the case in Crawl. (With exception of Trog, and maybe the odd occasional character that finds and chooses to wear CPA or GDA by mid game, but that doesn't happen very often, and even those characters can get some magic eventually, if they want to.)

Hurkyl wrote: Having a low level buff like Repel Missiles being useful to nearly every character is a good thing. Especially if you can get the effect without having to waste a turn in the middle of combat.


Crawl tries to avoid "no brainers." Although, like "spoilers," there seems to be a lot of confusion about what is meant by this.

Wearing armor, wielding a weapon and at least occasionally using it, picking up wands and using them, getting some magic eventually (if your god conduct doesn't prevent it), etc. are all things that nearly all characters should do, and will. These aren't no brainers however because in each specific case there are meaningful decisions about what to wear, how and when to use the wands (since they have limited uses), etc.

Repel missiles is a specific magic spell that nearly all characters will want to get and, even worse, since you can get its benefit by casting it outside of combat, it doesn't present any interesting choices in terms of how and when to use it.

That's a problem, on one level, in exactly the same way that it would be a problem if one specific weapon type or one specific type of armor were unambiguously completely better for nearly all characters. On another level it is even worse because, unlike using a weapon well and minimizing damage input (which good armors help with), using repel missiles doesn't involve any interesting tactical considerations. This is true to some extent of some other things, but most of those other things at least involve a non-negligible experience investment, and thus at least potentially present a strategic consideration in terms of weighing costs/benefits of being able to use them. This is largely untrue of the spell repel missiles.
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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 21:22

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Hurkyl wrote:If it had a permanent duration, it wouldn't be useful to cast out of combat either, since you don't need to cast it at all. :)

It strikes me that this discussion is polarized by the bias against blaster characters. Characters whose primary means of defense is "kill it (or run away) before it gets to me" really cannot afford to waste time casting buffs during combat -- every proposal that tries to push buffs to combat-castable only is a nerf on this style of play.

Furthermore, it seems the model that some have centered their thinking on is that physical combat is the staple that every character should be focused on, and spells should be reserved for special uses or as a substitute for ranged weaponry.

I strongly encourage a different paradigm: light amounts of both physical and magical combat should be readily accessible to all characters. From a gameplay perspective, it simply doesn't make any sense that a character should be happy to find any 1 AC auxiliary items he finds lying around the dungeon (even if he hasn't even bothered training Armour yet), and be able to make good use of a good weapon found on the floor (even if he hasn't even bothered training the weapon skill yet), but have a book of low level magic be completely useless to the character unless it wants to invest several levels of experience to it.

(this does make sense if you cling to the traditional separation of might and magic, but surely this forum doesn't encourage doing such a thing, does it? :lol: )

Having a low level buff like Repel Missiles being useful to nearly every character is a good thing. Especially if you can get the effect without having to waste a turn in the middle of combat.

If the actual effect of permanent Repel Missiles is so strong it breaks the game, then the solution should be to reduce level of effect, rather than trying to nerf the magical side of the game into oblivion.


I think people are upset about theoretical design principles not being adhered to regarding out of combat effects. Personally I like current rmsl since it's more convenient to use than the old one. I don't know of anyone who actually takes off their armour out of combat to cast rmsl and puts it back on (I really hope no one subjects themself to this). It has seemed to me that this game operates according to "Even if some action X were encouraged in a tedious way that no one actually does, X should be removed, because what matters is that you COULD do it.", because theoretically optimal play shouldn't be tedious.

Take the brand spells for instance. I'd like to think no one casted it before every fight, maybe for potentially tough ones. My understanding as to why it was removed was: You could and theoretically should do it, which would be a pain. Even if no one did it, what matters is the theoretical principle, not how it plays out in real games.
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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 22:04

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

and into wrote:1.) Merge dmsl and rmsl into one level 4 or level 5 spell.* Keep the spell power dependence, lose the indefinite duration.
2.) All buffs (charms or not) give some degree of contamination upon casting, which scales up quickly with repeated short term use. Exceptions: forms, berserk, probably swiftness, probably warp weapon and excruciating wounds, the effects from agility/might/brilliance, and most divine buffs that cost piety (all of these have other limiting/balancing factors). Probably some others that I'm forgetting won't need to give contamination.
3.) Probably make glow indication a bit more fine-grained to give more info about current glow, since it will now be a more important mechanic.
4.) All buff spells that give contamination indicate how much glow they give with a bar, similar to hunger costs or whatever.

The main effect of this change is it prevents using multiple buffs at the same time. That's one of the goals of the mp drain suggestion as well, so that's good. However, this change doesn't add any other tactical considerations, while the mp drain suggestion does. For example if all you want to cast is rmsl and all you get is contam, there's not much to think about, it's exactly the same as old rmsl with a duration. Basically as long as the combination of buffs that you cast doesn't exceed yellow contam, the contam might as well not exist. This is a problem with contam. Mp drain is better at creating decisions because mp is used for things other than buffs, unlike contam. It also adds more flexibility: for example you can cast rmsl for x turns, or rmsl + regen for x/2 turns. If you cast haste and invis with contam, you're fucked. With mp drain you can do that, but you have a short amount of turns to work with. My other problem with contam is that it takes a long time to go away.

tabstorm wrote:I think people are upset about theoretical design principles not being adhered to regarding out of combat effects. Personally I like current rmsl since it's more convenient to use than the old one. I don't know of anyone who actually takes off their armour out of combat to cast rmsl and puts it back on (I really hope no one subjects themself to this). It has seemed to me that this game operates according to "Even if some action X were encouraged in a tedious way that no one actually does, it should be removed, because what matters is that you COULD do it.", because theoretically optimal play shouldn't be tedious.

One problem is that if the current state of rmsl is good and an improvement, it means many other buffs should be changed to be the same as rmsl, using the same logic that was used to change rmsl. The problems with that have been described in this thread. In my opinion, the most important thing here is that spells should be tactical effects, and not strategical. To clarify: if it's beneficial to cast rmsl out of combat, it becomes a strategical spell, not tactical. The people itt who are suggesting making rmsl strategical are missing the point. Why is it bad to have strategical spells? Because spells are more interesting when used tactically, not out of combat. Strategical spells also tend to have lots of problems, like ignoring failure rate, ignoring mp, and the incentive to always have them casted. The suggestion of "make them fail based on spellpower/failure %" is terrible because it doesn't change the fact that you always want to have them casted out of combat.

Now going back to the first point, if the current state of rmsl ISN'T good, then there's no reason it should stay this way (the real answer is that it's better than the old version, but worse than other versions, and this thread is suggesting one such version by the way). The argument for keeping rmsl the way it is right now is: "it's an improvement over the old design, so it's fine as long as we don't also improve the other buffs the same way, because then it would be really bad". Also I would remove armor to cast rmsl while clearing Zot 5 if my character needed it.

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Post Friday, 13th June 2014, 22:30

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Yeah, those are good points. Extending contam as a balancing mechanism would be a bit less radical and far-reaching, but not as dynamic tactically (though better in this respect than current situation) and would probably require more quickly getting rid of contam that doesn't reach glow levels.

Anyway, I'd certainly be interested in trying out an experimental branch with mp drain while buff spells are active.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 00:27

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

There are multiple simple suggestions that would solve the armour problem, in both this thread and the last one on the topic (buffs go away if you switch body armour, effectiveness of buff is based on current armour, you have to pass a new check based on your new spell success if you change armours, etc). That one really isn't an argument against new rMsl, it's an argument for making one of those changes.

The thing is I don't really think old rMsl was much of a tactical spell, considering you could just keep it up all the time. The new version is more likely to be tactical because it expires in the middle of fights (so you are forced to make a decision on whether to recast it while there is a relevant enemy in sight, rather than when you're just walking around). You might then choose to cast it out of combat sometimes, but it would be a lot less often than you would under the old system.

The issue that TDA first identified is that it requires basically no investment to learn and is thus a no brainer. My proposed solution to this would be to make it so that it requires some investment to learn. I guess you could also give it some drawback, but I don't see MP drain as a good idea for that because it would make buff spells completely worthless to characters who rely on their MP pool (or overpowered for those who don't). Something limiting the amount of buffs you can have at once (so it becomes like item slots or forms) seems reasonable to me.

I don't buy the "useful outside of combat" argument at all. rMsl is completely useless outside of combat (if nothing is shooting at you it does nothing), and I think this is an important distinction to make between it and spells that were removed using that reason. It doesn't have the problem that, say, Detect Monsters had - you won't want to cast it again and again all the time, because you just need to cast it once. And because its effect can be based on spell success/power those can be relevant.

It can be useful to cast it outside of combat, but equally it can be pretty useful to put on a helmet outside of combat. I don't see the inherent problem with broadly strategic spells, and as I've pointed out above I think this model for buffs leads to more tactical decisions, not less.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 08:34

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I would much rather see repel missiles converted to the proposed and written spell that creates (non-spell) missile-deflecting clouds that don't move with you than try to add some sort of MP drain to it.

Adding MP drain to charms means charms remain useful for characters who don't use their MP for anything else, but useless for characters who use their MP for damage (this is particularly true of low level spells, a level 2 MP-draining spell just is an automatic "no" when you only have 5-9 max MP and use that MP as your primary damage source.)

Repel missiles is being held up as the shining example of a 'no brainer no investment' spell, and to some extent I agree, but that's because repel missile's *mechanic* is not appropriate to a low level spell, it's a mechanic which, rather than diminishing it's usefulness as the monster difficulty increases, actually remains as useful, if not becomes even more useful at higher level than at low level. This is bad design for a level 2 spell, but it doesn't by itself indicate that "all out of combat spells are bad" it just means "that spell is bad as written". A different implementation serving the same role, which scales appropriately for a level two spell, would be fine.
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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 15:21

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Leafsnail wrote:I don't see the inherent problem with broadly strategic spells, and as I've pointed out above I think this model for buffs leads to more tactical decisions, not less.

You're attempting to add a tactical element to repel missiles by giving it a chance to randomly expire at the start of a fight. Just going to mention that this is a pretty bad way to balance a spell, but that's not the point that should be argued here.
The addition of this random chance to expire doesn't change the fact that in the majority of cases the spell will be cast outside of combat. Even in the best case scenario where the player recasts the spell during a fight, the spell effect BEFORE the recast is a strategic effect, not a tactical one (the effect is free regardless of whether the spell is recast afterwards or not). In terms of game design, strategical spells don't work because they ignore several spell mechanics, are boring to use because they don't use tactics, and are recast dozens to hundreds of times in a game -for no reason- (because they don't use tactics so the recast is completely pointless).

It seems strange that some people focus on attempting to make rmsl permanent, and then try to fix the problems that a permanent spell causes (by making it randomly expire, or by increasing the exp investment). Let's be honest, you want to invest exp and get a permanent effect. There's absolutely nothing spell-like about a permanent rmsl spell, other than it still being called a spell. The mp cost doesn't matter, failure doesn't matter (even if you try to make it matter it still doesn't matter), the turns spent casting it don't matter. Just skip the whole spell thing. Someone suggested an item that, when charged with exp, provides an effect such as rmsl. This is what you want. If this was what the people who want permanent rmsl were suggesting, I would be completely fine with it, because it doesn't try to shoehorn an effect that's not a spell into the spell system. But trying to fix buff spells by making them permanent is going in the wrong direction and making the problem worse. To make the problem more evident, imagine applying the permanent rmsl idea to stoneskin, ozocubu's armor, phase shift or the brand spells. It becomes "learn stoneskin to get a permanent AC bonus, but sometimes it goes away in the middle of a fight!!". There's no way that's a well designed spell. Buffs as active tactical effects are the way to go.

Siegurt wrote:I would much rather see repel missiles converted to the proposed and written spell that creates (non-spell) missile-deflecting clouds that don't move with you than try to add some sort of MP drain to it.

The cloud rmsl idea is good (why non-spell though?), but this thread is not just about rmsl, and cloud rmsl doesn't fix the other buffs. I think it would be ok if all the buff spells that currently have problems were changed in their own way, like cloud rmsl, to not have problems anymore. But I'm suggesting mp drain because it manages to fix all buffs at the same time including those that currently have awkward drawbacks, and puts them all under the same system. I don't agree with the 2nd paragraph of your post, the reasons for my disagreement are in this thread.

and into wrote:contam as a balancing mechanism

Currently contam does two things. 1- prevents the player from using haste/invis too much. 2- punishes the player for doing various actions like miscasting, canceling tele with stasis, Lugonu wrath, etc. The punishment comes in the form of mutations, the other contam effects are largely irrelevant unless you get red contam which never happens, and even then.
Changing your idea a bit:
- The punishment in the form of mutations becomes instant, no contam. Example: if a miscast would give yellow contam which in turn would eventually give mutations, just give the mutations immediately without giving contam. Mashing 5 waiting for the possible mutations might be kind of exciting, but getting them instantly wouldn't change anything in most cases.
- Contam doesn't give mutations or cause any other contam effects like explosions, it does nothing. Unfortunate flavor loss here but I think I got one or two explosions in hundreds of games played.
- Contam is now exclusively used for buffs.
- All buffs generate contam while they're active.
- If the contam level reaches the maximum amount of X, active buffs are automatically turned off.
- Contam goes away a lot faster.
This is exactly like mp drain, but without any tradeoffs between buffs and other mp uses. Losing the tradeoffs is both good and bad, but it's certainly less radical than using mp, like you said, so it's easier to implement.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 16:16

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:It seems strange that some people focus on attempting to make rmsl permanent, and then try to fix the problems that a permanent spell causes (by making it randomly expire, or by increasing the exp investment). Let's be honest, you want to invest exp and get a permanent effect. There's absolutely nothing spell-like about a permanent rmsl spell, other than it still being called a spell. The mp cost doesn't matter, failure doesn't matter (even if you try to make it matter it still doesn't matter), the turns spent casting it don't matter. Just skip the whole spell thing. Someone suggested an item that, when charged with exp, provides an effect such as rmsl. This is what you want. If this was what the people who want permanent rmsl were suggesting, I would be completely fine with it, because it doesn't try to shoehorn an effect that's not a spell into the spell system. But trying to fix buff spells by making them permanent is going in the wrong direction and making the problem worse. To make the problem more evident, imagine applying the permanent rmsl idea to stoneskin, ozocubu's armor, phase shift or the brand spells. It becomes "learn stoneskin to get a permanent AC bonus, but sometimes it goes away in the middle of a fight!!". There's no way that's a well designed spell. Buffs as active tactical effects are the way to go.

I prefer to have RMsl permanent without fading; chance of actually deflecting a missile depends on spell success so that the miscast rate matters (but only if that is something we should really care about, rather than simply being dogma), Max MP and/or MP regeneration penalty as a cost to simulate maintaining the spell (assuming having the cost is something we should really care about, rather than simply being dogma). The spell is already in the spell system, I just want to keep the effect while removing tedium (recasting all the time for the old RMsl) and eliminate a degenerate behavior (disrobing to cast the new RMsl).

(I assume the "going away" effect in continued proposals is merely because that's what the current version does, rather than an actual preference to have that be the penalty)

It's even traditional for basic "don't dies" to be extremely long duration. Mage Armor and Protection From Arrows in D&D? Lasts X hours when cast by a a level X wizard.

You can have your buffs with active tactical effects: that does not preclude also having permanent buffs. It would even make sense to pair buffs: RMsl permanent, DMsl shorter duration with contamination or accuracy penalties or something. Stoneskin permanent, Statue Form for a shorter, stronger effect with its own penalty. Just have Ozocubu's armor permanent, but keep the melting problem. I think amongst all the buffs, Phase Shift is the one for which MP drain on effect makes the most sense, so go with that, still permanent.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 16:32

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:The cloud rmsl idea is good (why non-spell though?), but this thread is not just about rmsl, and cloud rmsl doesn't fix the other buffs. I think it would be ok if all the buff spells that currently have problems were changed in their own way, like cloud rmsl, to not have problems anymore. But I'm suggesting mp drain because it manages to fix all buffs at the same time including those that currently have awkward drawbacks, and puts them all under the same system. I don't agree with the 2nd paragraph of your post, the reasons for my disagreement are in this thread.

"Why non-spell" primarily because IIRC that's how argonaut proposed/implemented it: viewtopic.php?f=8&t=11754&p=164449#p164449

But I also agree that this would enhance it's role as a low-level spell and make it not nearly as useful for high level players (In Zot, deflecting an arrow is no bit deal, but deflecting a lich's "throw icicle" is well worth it, and I personally think a level 2 spell probably should not be that effective by that point in the game)

As for "fixing all charms by adding MP drain" I guess we'll just have to disagree, nothing that's appeared in this thread seems to counter the arguments I made in the second paragraph *to me* and if there's no way for us to come to a consensus on that point, then so be it :)

The fact is there's wildly different demands for mana depending on your character build, and hence there's no way to balance MP drain in a way that effects people at different ends of that spectrum in remotely the same way. That isn't to say that there shouldn't be something that happens, I just don't think MP drain is it.
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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 16:53

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Siegurt wrote:nothing that's appeared in this thread seems to counter the arguments I made in the second paragraph *to me* and if there's no way for us to come to a consensus on that point, then so be it :)

The fact is there's wildly different demands for mana depending on your character build, and hence there's no way to balance MP drain in a way that effects people at different ends of that spectrum in remotely the same way.

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.

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.

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.

XuaXua wrote:Have the amount of MP drained be based around the MP cost to cast the spell, enhanced (reduced) by some combined factor of Spellcasting, Int, and related Magic School(s), with emphasis on Magic School(s) Skill.

crate wrote:making charms appeal specifically to characters with larger/otherwise-less-useful MP pools is a completely reasonable direction to go, imo.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 17:52

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

strategic buffs

A passive missile deflection that never expires or costs time/MP and is improved by training a skill? By chance do you mean Dodging? Because it sounds to me like you're saying, "I want Air Skill to increase my EV."

The only interesting decision one makes about Rmsl is "At this exact moment, is it worth spending 1 turn to cast/recast Rmsl?" Getting rid of that part is the worst change you could make. The current implementation luckily only gets rid of the casting, not the recasting, so it only mostly ruins the spell.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 18:36

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

TheDefiniteArticle wrote: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.


TheDefiniteArticle wrote:Armour also has nothing to do with Rmsl problems. If you have even vaguely decent spellpower it is easily castable in most armour. And since you are also getting Haste, Rmsl is easily castable in all armour, lawl.

Armour removal actually matters for Dmsl, but it is a minor problem. Infinite duration on a powerful buff is a much bigger problem.

Rmsl:
A) Is extremely powerful, one of my most valued spells when preparing for Zot
B) Does nothing interesting
C) Has no significant cost

When I find Rmsl, and I'm trying to decide if I should memorize it, the ONLY question I ask myself is "In a typical combat situation, will this character consider it worthwhile to devote time to activating this buff?" You might notice that with infinite duration Rmsl, this question changes into a fucking joke. The punchline is that since that change, every non-Trog character I play that finds Rmsl memorizes it at the first available turn regardless of skills or other available spells, and never ever forgets it except in the rare case of finding and deciding to use Dmsl.


TheDefiniteArticle wrote:As I explained in a previous thread, the problem is "this spell is useful outside of combat". Making the spell less useful during combat does not even address the problem! It is like if I told you "your son drives drunk on a regular basis" and you responded "I'll stock the fridge with Lite beer from now on."

To put it bluntly, spells that are useful outside of combat SHOULD NOT EXIST


TheDefiniteArticle wrote:Flight, Cure Poison, and Control Teleport are all AWFUL spells, that yes, absolutely should be removed with extreme prejudice.

Regen only works when your HP is less than full, and that only happens DURING combat. Sublimation of Blood is the same (although chunk Sublimation is awful for unrelated reasons).

Blink is a more complicated case that goes beyond the scope of this thread.

That doesn't solve the problem at all, in any way. But I appreciate the way you entirely ignored my explanation of exactly that.

Spell failure doesn't matter for a level 2 spell. Spellpower is a much better limiter on such a spell, and guess what, Rmsl already uses spellpower.

Spellpower currently matters a lot for Rmsl, by the way. It just doesn't create any decisions. Memorizing the spell is a 'no-brainer' even if you don't train Charms, but now that you have one of the best spells in the game memorized, training Charms to make that spell stronger is also a 'no-brainer'. I assume people saying spellpower doesn't matter for Rmsl don't actually know how the spell works, as that was the ONLY benefit of the change to infinite duration.


TheDefiniteArticle wrote:A passive missile deflection that never expires or costs time/MP and is improved by training a skill? By chance do you mean Dodging? Because it sounds to me like you're saying, "I want Air Skill to increase my EV."

The only interesting decision one makes about Rmsl is "At this exact moment, is it worth spending 1 turn to cast/recast Rmsl?" Getting rid of that part is the worst change you could make. The current implementation luckily only gets rid of the casting, not the recasting, so it only mostly ruins the spell.

Shockingly Crawl is not "in D&D".


Hi! I've noticed that you've been expressed your opinions with a level of vehemence bordering on abrasiveness, but I thought you might want to know that they aren't coming out very coherently. After reviewing all your posts in this thread, I still have no idea what you actually want with Repel Missiles. You don't seem to like either the current implementation or the old implementation, but you've never actually elucidated what sort of implementation you do think would be good. Furthermore, your description of the problems you perceive is riddled with leaps of logic that probably seem perfectly rational in your head, but since you've never successfully communicated the steps between your statements they aren't being understood that way. I actually can't figure out if you'd rather Repel Missiles go away completely, or whether you really like standing just outside LOS of a monster and casting all your buffs in sequence? I don't know.

So what *do* you actually think? I'd like to know all about what you think.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 19:06

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Come to think of it aren't undead animation spells basically in the same camp as the new rMsl? You cast them out of combat and then they give you a boost. Although the casting of these spells is a lot less likely to be tactical.

Wahaha wrote:You're attempting to add a tactical element to repel missiles by giving it a chance to randomly expire at the start of a fight. Just going to mention that this is a pretty bad way to balance a spell, but that's not the point that should be argued here.
The addition of this random chance to expire doesn't change the fact that in the majority of cases the spell will be cast outside of combat. Even in the best case scenario where the player recasts the spell during a fight, the spell effect BEFORE the recast is a strategic effect, not a tactical one (the effect is free regardless of whether the spell is recast afterwards or not). In terms of game design, strategical spells don't work because they ignore several spell mechanics, are boring to use because they don't use tactics, and are recast dozens to hundreds of times in a game -for no reason- (because they don't use tactics so the recast is completely pointless).
I don't want to give it a random chance to expire at the start of a fight. I am referring to its current behaviour, which makes it expire in the middle of fights.

I don't think this argument works. rMsl will introduce a tactical decision virtually every single time it expires (barring the rather rare event of a monster simultaneously firing at you and dying or whatever). So in other words, the timing of every casting of rMsl other than the first will involve a tactical choice. That seems far better to me than almost every other buff in the game, which are endlessly recast outside of battle.

The reasoning you use for why strategic spells are bad clearly doesn't apply. rMsl does use tactics on almost every single use, and it requires far less casting than basically every other buff in the game.

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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 20:10

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Wahaha wrote:
Siegurt wrote:nothing that's appeared in this thread seems to counter the arguments I made in the second paragraph *to me* and if there's no way for us to come to a consensus on that point, then so be it :)

The fact is there's wildly different demands for mana depending on your character build, and hence there's no way to balance MP drain in a way that effects people at different ends of that spectrum in remotely the same way.

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.

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.

XuaXua wrote:Have the amount of MP drained be based around the MP cost to cast the spell, enhanced (reduced) by some combined factor of Spellcasting, Int, and related Magic School(s), with emphasis on Magic School(s) Skill.


crate wrote:making charms appeal specifically to characters with larger/otherwise-less-useful MP pools is a completely reasonable direction to go, imo.


This actually exemplifies my point rather than detracting from it.

When you're talking about a level 2 spell and a level 2-3 book-starting character, you have to *choose* whether use your killdudes or cast your buffs,
the result of this suggestion is that suddenly low-level, MP-reliant characters (Who have trained spell skills) can't use buffs at all, and Melee-ers with no skill can, which is the exact opposite of what you're suggesting you want here.

2 MP for a buff when your max MP pool is 9-10 is a significant tactical decision, even if it's "out of combat" (for the most part when you are that level you'll get little to no use out of casting said spells out of combat, and because it comprises a large portion of your existing mana pool, you'll be faced with significant tactical decisions as to whether to use that mana or not)

The problem is that many of these spells continue to be useful (in specific case of rMsl very useful) when your character is high enough level that the cost is no longer significant enough to make for reasonable tactical decisions, at that point these spells become 'no brainers' and are bad, the usefulness of these spells should scale, the same way the usefulness of other spells scale, so that if you are XL15 and you come across a level 2 buff, it will pretty much not be interesting or useful to memorize, much less cast.

The problem with the suggestion as-is is that the largest (percentage) penalty is applied when it's *least* applicable (at low level) and when it's *most* applicable (at high level) it's the least penalizing.

If you're going to try to stick with the "MP cost" it would need to be proportional to "how many levels you are above the spell's level" or something like that, which is awkward, horrible, spoilery, and goes against "increasing your skills or experience should never make your character worse", so while balanced, I think that would be a terrible solution.

While we're at it, charms aren't the only spells that are useful "out of combat", summons, undead animations, really anything that doesn't require a monster as a target can be cast ahead of combat (and it's often optimal to do so) is it also the suggestion that these spells are broken and should be removed (given some sort of maintenance cost?)
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Post Saturday, 14th June 2014, 20:47

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

the undead-ally-making spells are also extremely problematic design wise! who couldve guessed!
in fact for a long time twisted ressurrection was significantly more overpowered than any charm in the game, but no one knew this because to make it so you had to go through the absolutely excruciating process of dragging ~20 aboms up and down stairs on every single floor (and they didn't follow like orcs, and you couldnt interlevel recall them)

I suspect that twisted res is still way strong (even with abominations not healing) but there is no way I'm going to test it out to see since carting aboms around has not improved at all

(and animate skeleton and animate dead have serious problems also, though they're slightly less awful)

With summons there's actually a very easy solution: reduce their duration. I've supported this for a long time (summon hydra is not problematic at all). Or you could make summons time out more rapidly with no monsters in los, etc.

So yes, all the out-of-combat spells are problematic. Charms just come up more often since people actually cast those.

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Post Sunday, 15th June 2014, 00:26

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

Really though summons and animate foo + twisted resurrection would need their own thread, though. I like a lot of the changes that have been made to summoning, but animate dead/skeleton and TR are definitely problematic.

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Post Sunday, 15th June 2014, 02:19

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

TheDefiniteArticle wrote:
strategic buffs

A passive missile deflection that never expires or costs time/MP and is improved by training a skill? By chance do you mean Dodging? Because it sounds to me like you're saying, "I want Air Skill to increase my EV."

And I have no problem with that. Nor do I have a problem with the idea that Earth skill raises my AC, that Fighting skill improves my weapon damage, or that Armour skill decreases my miscast rates.

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Post Sunday, 15th June 2014, 06:38

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

KoboldLord wrote:So what *do* you actually think? I'd like to know all about what you think.

Blunt Version: I think there's a very good reason Delayed Fireball is level 7 and not level 5. I think this reason is self-evident. I think anyone who wants infinite duration Charms does not actually care enough about good game design to bother thinking about it, and thus should not be posting in this subforum.

Stuff-I-Already-Said-A-Bunch-Of-Times Version: A spell that is not interesting should not exist. A buff with no downsides is not interesting. In the case of many Charms, the only downside is the cost. The turn spent casting a spell is a very large and important cost. In the case of low-level Charms it is the only cost that matters. Infinite duration says LOLHAIGUYZ.

what sort of implementation you do think would be good.

Old Dmsl. Not perfect, sure, but one of the least problematic Charms.

standing just outside LOS of a monster

I'm gonna do that with or without buffs. Symmetrical LOS demands it. Buffs actually improve that time, by giving me something to do.

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Post Sunday, 15th June 2014, 07:20

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

So you're flat-out refusing to justify your position in any way. Your sole defense is the bare assertion that your opinion is so obvious that anybody who doesn't already agree with you is not worth convincing. You may or may not have a worthwhile opinion, but other participants will never be able to tell if you agree with them for good reasons or because you are picking opinions at random. You choose not to show your work, which is exceptionally unfortunate because your thinking process is actually more important to the discussion than your conclusion itself.

As it happens, if old Deflect Missiles was your ideal than I'm left with no idea whether your opinion is coherent at all, because the old Deflect Missiles shared all of the same drawbacks as the old Repel Missiles except it had a marginally larger up-front xp cost. You still could and invariably did keep it up at all times once it was usable, and there was no serious reason to consider doing otherwise other than the modest level of unnecessary annoyance from the interface.

A turn spent casting a spell is a cost if and only if that turn is spent with a monster in LOS. If you can trivially step outside of LOS or just run the timer, then spending a turn on a spell is not a cost at all. Old Repel and Deflect Missiles was problematic precisely because there was no reason to ever cast it under pressure. You kept it running when you were not fighting, and it would not time out when you were fighting barring rare circumstances like purple draconian breath. Contrast to the current system, where your initial cast before entering LOS with your target is not under pressure, but subsequent castings would be, since that first application is likely to collapse while under fire.

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Post Sunday, 15th June 2014, 15:49

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

KoboldLord wrote:So you're flat-out refusing to justify your position in any way. Your sole defense is the bare assertion that your opinion is so obvious that anybody who doesn't already agree with you is not worth convincing. You may or may not have a worthwhile opinion, but other participants will never be able to tell if you agree with them for good reasons or because you are picking opinions at random. You choose not to show your work, which is exceptionally unfortunate because your thinking process is actually more important to the discussion than your conclusion itself.

He justified his position not only in the previous posts, but also in the one you're replying to. What you're saying is very confusing.

current rmsl

It's easy to show why the current rmsl is still bad. Just imagine casting current rmsl exclusively out of combat.

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Post Sunday, 15th June 2014, 15:56

Re: Buff spells drain mp while active

I guess TDA is kindof providing a little bit of justification for some of his points, but as far as I'm concerned they were all shot down and he's refused to engage with any of those arguments.

I can see a valid argument against both the new and old rMsl in there, but he's presenting it as if the problem lies with the infinite duration rather than the very powerful effect on a low level spell.
Wahaha wrote:It's easy to show why the current rmsl is still bad. Just imagine casting current rmsl exclusively out of combat.
Ok, I'm imagining it.

What's the problem? Note that you could do exactly the same thing with old rMsl, only if you did it with old rMsl you wouldn't be handicapping yourself because it would never be down in a combat situation.

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