Summons


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Temple Termagant

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 17:06

Summons

hi I'm back again... my little artifice bit it by pulling Xom on accident (splorch!).

What i liked about Nemelex was the summons. God I live bone dragon summons. Anyways i wanted to try out a summoner, but I'm reading up on it saying that they only get 50% of the experience gained from their minions killed?! So should i be trying to kill shot everything after my summons weaken it? Kinda defeats the purpose of summons if i have to frontline... I'm not a fan of undead starts (necronomicon i want thee) so whats a good starting race for a summoner?

Dungeon Master

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 17:16

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

akira: The behaviour you describe for summoners is called "killstealing". It does not apply anymore. Now we track who does damage to some monster. So if you bone dragon nearly kills the titan and you rush to get the final blow, you'll 50%, not 100%. On the other hand, if you almost single-handedly kill an ogre and your lousy imp decides to off her, you'll get almost all the xp. (The fact that summons reduce xp is not negotiable, although some folks keep trying.)

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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 18:39

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

I have now altered my tactics and am raising a hell of a lot more undead.
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Temple Termagant

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 19:02

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

dpeg: So that means summoning is rather worthless, unless i am a melee mage. I understand the exp reduction for summons, especially for permanent allies. Unless i scum every level with an undead (ugh) a strait summoner seems kinda gimped. I admit its kinda sad when you see "your shadow imp looks stronger" then he explodes in a poof of logic. Looks like its just butterflies for summons for now. Off to High elf wiz i guess.

Dungeon Master

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 19:17

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

akira: No, but I won't explain.

Dungeon Master

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 19:29

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

Pure summoners can quite happily kill pretty much everything in the game regardless of the XP loss. You should probably try it instead of just calling it worthless with no good reasoning.

(The main problem for me is the awful message spam, but you can limit that through config changes at least).

Dungeon Master

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 19:37

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

MarvinPA: Yes, I believe we should try to slowly move away from summon spam to quality summons. sorear's idea of summon cap was spot on, in my opinion.

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 20:06

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

akira wrote:dpeg: So that means summoning is rather worthless, unless i am a melee mage. I understand the exp reduction for summons, especially for permanent allies. Unless i scum every level with an undead (ugh) a strait summoner seems kinda gimped. I admit its kinda sad when you see "your shadow imp looks stronger" then he explodes in a poof of logic. Looks like its just butterflies for summons for now. Off to High elf wiz i guess.


The xp curve is exponential. Losing a full half of your xp over the course of the entire game to summon leeching basically means you'll lag roughly two skill levels behind a roughly equivalent conjuror character. The penalty for poor racial skill aptitudes is significantly more severe in many cases, and -2 to charms never stopped anybody from training it.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Tuesday, 31st May 2011, 22:14

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

It's not that it kills more stuff, but that less stuff kills you when you're not doing the fighting. If you want to keep discussing this, I can split the posts in a new topic.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Wednesday, 1st June 2011, 07:40

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

Yes, not all players seem to realise that the safety you gain from allies has to be paid for. And the usual costs are not sufficient (skill investment, need to find the books, raising Int). There will be other costs than just xp, but using the latter was a pretty good idea by Linley, in my opinion: thematically, it means the xp is shared between the ally and you.
It should go without saying that no xp penalty would makes allies a no-brainer.

hxy

Slime Squisher

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Post Wednesday, 1st June 2011, 08:47

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

hmm... after getting more xp do summons level up? e.g. a "5" imp becomes a "4" or something like that?
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Dungeon Master

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Post Wednesday, 1st June 2011, 08:58

Re: Summons

hxy wrote:hmm... after getting more xp do summons level up? e.g. a "5" imp becomes a "4" or something like that?

Summons can level up yes. But it won't make a demon to change tier. An imp will stay a five, even if it gains several levels.
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Blades Runner

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Post Wednesday, 1st June 2011, 09:07

Re: Summons

(didn't read galehar's.) spell power has an effect on some spells, but call imp and demonic horde only summon 5s, and summon greater demon only summons 1s. summon demmon gets you (at least) 2s and 3s, iirc, but i don't know if the demon type is tied to spell power.

i don't see how summon spam is that terrible. you typically want to fight in open areas to overwhelm enemies with greater numbers, and then you're putting yourself at risk too. playing a summoner gives you a degree of safety (many escape options), but you're also somewhat behind in experience at all times. a cap to the number of summons (especially one as restrictive as i've seen bandied about in the wiki) would kill a number of good spells that serve a purpose, like butterflies or demonic horde. i mean, you don't surround yourself with 1s, right? going hybrid and fighting alongside a few strong allies is already a valid option; i don't see the need to force everyone into that mold.

that said, i've never played a very high-level summoner. i've got one going now, so i hope to get there.

message spam *is* indeed terrible, but probably a nightmare to patch.
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Tartarus Sorceror

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Post Wednesday, 1st June 2011, 17:01

Re: Summons

I think losing experience is probably a good way of dealing with the safety of summons, but if it were desirable to directly reduce the safety instead of trying to balance a penalty, could a portion of damage to summons be directed at the player? Flavor it as a mystical link between the summoned and the summoner, or as heavy mental exertion required to maintain control during combat.

Temple Termagant

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Post Wednesday, 1st June 2011, 19:54

Re: Summons

jejorda2 wrote:I think losing experience is probably a good way of dealing with the safety of summons, but if it were desirable to directly reduce the safety instead of trying to balance a penalty, could a portion of damage to summons be directed at the player? Flavor it as a mystical link between the summoned and the summoner, or as heavy mental exertion required to maintain control during combat.


i like this. I like this alot. Whenever i play a summoner i don't fear spamming except to preserve my food clock. I think that a good fix could be this:

1) keep permanent summons and allies experience gain as 50/50 (player/creature)
2) push temporary summons to 60/40 with leftover creature experience (whatever is left in their pool) given to the player at 25% when they naturally expire.
3) Whenever a summon is killed or dispelled before the natural player timer (e.g. abjuration, death, etc) the controller takes damage equal to the spell rank of the destroyed creature's summon spell. Example: when a butterfly summoned via Summon: Butterflies dies the player takes 1 damage.

This results in an artificial cap on summons as reckless summoning can get you killed. Additionally it also encourages risk/reward balancing with temporary summons. Makes decisions like "I have 4 hp, do i summon butterflies or a single spell level 3 to block for me?" interesting and more dynamic.

Lair Larrikin

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Post Monday, 6th June 2011, 20:01

Re: Summons

Attaching your HP pool to your summons makes me really nervous personally, especially in the earlier game when you summon several things that are A) Dumb, B) Weak and C) Difficult to control. I think you are approaching 'unfun' territory in the name of balance.

That said, it's also something I'd love to test as a mechanism for balance and I think with proper testing/tweaking, I think it could work. Really, my only concerns are the early game and abjuration. Summon Butterflies would be indirectly nerfed, but I don't think that's a terrible thing either.

Temple Termagant

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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 18:39

Re: Summons

Kautzman wrote:Attaching your HP pool to your summons makes me really nervous personally, especially in the earlier game when you summon several things that are A) Dumb, B) Weak and C) Difficult to control. I think you are approaching 'unfun' territory in the name of balance.

That said, it's also something I'd love to test as a mechanism for balance and I think with proper testing/tweaking, I think it could work. Really, my only concerns are the early game and abjuration. Summon Butterflies would be indirectly nerfed, but I don't think that's a terrible thing either.


early game summoners have 7-9 hp right? and 3 mana? its like playing a necro who uses Pain who isn't undead or DD. Since exp is pushed up staying back is more of an incentive. I'm a programer but i don't know the first thing about how to implement this into the code. I could look and try to get a test of this up but it would be better if the developers did it >.<.

to that end hmmm DD summoner bypasses some of the ally death problems.

Lair Larrikin

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Post Tuesday, 7th June 2011, 19:15

Re: Summons

akira wrote:
Kautzman wrote:Attaching your HP pool to your summons makes me really nervous personally, especially in the earlier game when you summon several things that are A) Dumb, B) Weak and C) Difficult to control. I think you are approaching 'unfun' territory in the name of balance.

That said, it's also something I'd love to test as a mechanism for balance and I think with proper testing/tweaking, I think it could work. Really, my only concerns are the early game and abjuration. Summon Butterflies would be indirectly nerfed, but I don't think that's a terrible thing either.


early game summoners have 7-9 hp right? and 3 mana? its like playing a necro who uses Pain who isn't undead or DD. Since exp is pushed up staying back is more of an incentive. I'm a programer but i don't know the first thing about how to implement this into the code. I could look and try to get a test of this up but it would be better if the developers did it >.<.

to that end hmmm DD summoner bypasses some of the ally death problems.


The difference though is that pain is very controllable, where summons are not. There is going to be a point where you are going to have to choose to either put more summons on the field than you have HP to compensate or choose to retreat in some fashion. I think that's a critical point in decision making and I think the ultimate question is: "Is this decision interesting/difficult" and then "Is it interesting/difficult for the right reasons". Given that so many variables would go into such decision making, I think that testing would be the best way to really get a feel for such a mechanic.

Bim

Crypt Cleanser

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Post Friday, 17th June 2011, 22:32

Re: Summons

My main problem is that summoning is pretty much a hybrid class by definition, even though summon imp/whatever is still powerful, you can't just rely on magic to get the job done, which you can (arguably) with most other classes or you'll be behind. However, haunt/summon demons is very, very powerful, and although a difficult class to play, as soon as you get going it gets increasingly easy, especially after a ring of magic power ect. This being said, I think the XP thing is quite unattractive and as said, forces you to hybridise if you want to level up fast enough, with summoning being a 'back up plan' which I think takes some of the fun out of it.

How about if summons were tied to MP instead/as well as a smaller xp cut? for instance, similar to the permanent spell extension plans, every summon (or every two/whatever) kept one point of MP, this would be difficult to do with packs, but would stop insane casting, and could be quite limiting for high level summons. This doesn't solve the hybrid problem at all, but would mean the XP cuts wouldn't have to be so drastic, and if this was combined with slightly stronger individual summons, it could make for interesting management and would stop them being just a back up spam attack.
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Spider Stomper

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Post Saturday, 18th June 2011, 00:13

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

minmay wrote:After realizing that nobody actually answered the original question: kobold works well. Deep elf and kenku have the aptitudes, but don't fit the playstyle as well as you might think. Mummies and vampires have serious disadvantages but fit like a wizard hat. Draconian is decent, too.


What makes that true, if I may ask?
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Snake Sneak

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Post Tuesday, 28th June 2011, 21:55

Re: Summons

ElectricAlbatross wrote:
minmay wrote:After realizing that nobody actually answered the original question: kobold works well. Deep elf and kenku have the aptitudes, but don't fit the playstyle as well as you might think. Mummies and vampires have serious disadvantages but fit like a wizard hat. Draconian is decent, too.


What makes that true, if I may ask?


The summons which summoners start with can be very effective if you spam a bunch of them to lock enemies in place. In particular smammels in its current form can take down enemies like stone giants relatively safely if you have the mp and patience. So with this in mind going though this list.

Kobolds have great evasion and learn short blades and stabbing very quick to get some stabs in while your summons are distracting the enemies. The carnivore means that food is less of a problem if you decide you want to fill the screen up with popcorn and wait around.

Deep elf and kenku lack hp in short. A great weakness to summoners is bolt spells. A centaur warrior or bolt throwing caster can kill you very very quickly. Although kenku are great at UC so with some care and focus you can make a pretty good monk-like KeSu.

Mummies and vampires don't have a food clock. Well vampires do but since you can just fill up the screen with summons not a lot of things hit you anyway. As I said, you can take out stone giants with smammels so if you want you can be scummy and try to take on the OOD monsters that appear when you wait around. Basically enemies will either a) die to spammels easily or b) kill you without much you can do about it. I am thinking centaur warriors again with their flaming arrows. This is probably the best reason spammels needs another nerf.
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Mines Malingerer

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Post Tuesday, 26th July 2011, 16:26

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

dpeg wrote:akira: The behaviour you describe for summoners is called "killstealing". It does not apply anymore. Now we track who does damage to some monster. So if you bone dragon nearly kills the titan and you rush to get the final blow, you'll 50%, not 100%. On the other hand, if you almost single-handedly kill an ogre and your lousy imp decides to off her, you'll get almost all the xp. (The fact that summons reduce xp is not negotiable, although some folks keep trying.)

Does anyone know if this is a new feature in 0.9, or if it's been around for longer than that? This is literally the only place I've ever read about it, and learndb and the wiki still seem to be stuck on the 50% rule.

Also, I'd be curious to know if the formula is more fully documented somewhere. If my ally does all the work and I don't even touch the enemy, do I still get 50%?

Lair Larrikin

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Post Tuesday, 26th July 2011, 17:04

Re: The 'Questions too small to need their own thread' threa

DivineHammer wrote:
dpeg wrote:akira: The behaviour you describe for summoners is called "killstealing". It does not apply anymore. Now we track who does damage to some monster. So if you bone dragon nearly kills the titan and you rush to get the final blow, you'll 50%, not 100%. On the other hand, if you almost single-handedly kill an ogre and your lousy imp decides to off her, you'll get almost all the xp. (The fact that summons reduce xp is not negotiable, although some folks keep trying.)

Does anyone know if this is a new feature in 0.9, or if it's been around for longer than that? This is literally the only place I've ever read about it, and learndb and the wiki still seem to be stuck on the 50% rule.

Also, I'd be curious to know if the formula is more fully documented somewhere. If my ally does all the work and I don't even touch the enemy, do I still get 50%?


It's been around since February, but I'm not familiar enough with the source to work out the exact rates. Looks like the minimum is 50%, though.

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