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Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 4)

PostPosted: Friday, 29th July 2011, 15:02
by tazoz
The disciples believe in the divinity of the four elements, water, fire, air and earth, every object or person is comprised of a combination of the elements and through that link life is created. The god gives them the ability to manipulate and draw in the energy of the elements. At low levels they can draw in the energy of the terrain around them to become an elemental being as long as they continue to draw in the energy. As time goes by they learn to draw in magical elemental energy to infuse themselves with elemental power, later they learn to manipulate the elements at a distance and finally they learn to manipulate the elemental energy of living beings.

The powers granted:

0:all hostile elementals are neutral, No opposing elemental school costs.
*: Wafetri's gift:passive when exploring new areas: Create a random patch of magma, cloud, diggable wall, water somewhere on the level outside of view not in a place where an enemy or an item is and not beside any other element or in corridors (So magma will connect with other magma and will never be beside a wall.), increases with increased piety.
**:Elemental form: activated ability 2 mp, you are prompted: "draw energy from which direction" you choose a direction when you cast it, the transformation only lasts as long as you are beside or in the corrosponding element or in the case of air elemental for a number of turns depending on invocations. If you point at a cloud that wasn't cast by player, the cloud disappears and you change into an air elemental, priority over all others (Lightning unarmed attack and brand with lightning, Flight and immune to air but takes more damage from physical: -10 AC, fast movement and enchance air magic, hinder earth magic), If you point at a diggable rock you can change into an earth elemental (vorpal unarmed attack and temporary brand with vorpal,Can dig patches of ground by walking into them, +10 AC, more damage from air slow movement and enchance earth magic, hinder air magic), if you point at lava you can change into a fire elemental (fire unarmed attack,RF++ RC-- Walk on lava and enchance fire magic, hinder ice magic), If you point at water you can change into a water elemental,(ice unarmed attack and temporary brand with ice,RC++ RF-- walk on water and enchance ice magic, hinder fire magic), all brands overwrite previous brands as long as the transformation is in effect, all forms have cloud immunity of the appropriate type.
***:Absorb elements: 2mp activated for a limited time depending on invocations You become an air elemental if hit by enemy air spells, you become fire elemental if hit by elemental fire, etc, this effect always overwrites previous changes, once changed you don't change back until the ability ends or you cancel it.
****:Manipulate elements: 3 mp and piety: You cast it on an empty space(no creatures, items or features) beside an elemental type of ground, and it has an elemental effect which lasts for 3 turns: Expand a cloud to that space, create walls by walls, spread lava and spread water. If there are multiple elemental types of ground, choose one randomly.
*****:Metamorph to elemental suroundings: 6 mp: piety, add random patches of magma, shallow and deep water, diggable walls and permanent clouds around the level including in sight but other rules the same as Wafetri's gift.
******:Wafetri's natural balance 5mp, high piety cost: while active All creatures elemental resistances are reduced or increased by 1 towards 0 if they aren't already 0.

Piety gain: When exploring new areas
Piety loss over time.

Penance: major elemental miscast, change to opposite form when hit by element (continuous effect).

Notes: Most of the comments below are not relevant anymore as the god has changed completely, so skip reading them and add your own comments on the newest version of the god. (I post whenever I change something, so all the posts after my last post are relevant).

Thanks for all your contributions, the god is shaping up nicely.

Re: Ifea the god of the elements

PostPosted: Friday, 29th July 2011, 15:46
by Galefury
Sounds quite interesting. Notable blocked spells: all necromancy, all translocations, most summons, most poison spells, pure conjurations, haste, blade hands. Playing an elemental magic generalist is quite luck dependent, maybe this god should gift the four elementalist starting books, or gift one or two random ones of the four (or maybe even gift higher elemental books).

I don't like spell enhancement depending on terrain, especially with earth and air being so much more available in most branches than ice and fire. I think limiting the player to elemental spells is interesting enough in itself, so such a gimmick is not needed.

Also removing the penalty for training opposing schools is tricky. What happens when you leave the god? What happens if you take it up after training opposing schools with the penalty? The most simple solution of just removing the penalty during worship, with no compensation for wasted levels from previous training and no penalty on leaving the god provides a persistent bonus. This is nothing new, god gifts do it and ashenzari used to provide an exp bonus. But this kind of stuff seems to be not very well liked by some devs.

Re: Wefa the god of the elements

PostPosted: Friday, 29th July 2011, 19:45
by Moose
Some interesting ideas here, but I think that:

**:Enhanced elements when close to such elements: enhanced ice spells when beside water, Enhanced earth spells when beside a diggable wall, Enhanced air spells when flying and not close to any other element, Enhanced fire spells when close to lava.
***:Wizardry bonus to elements when close to such elements (as enhanced)

might be a bit too situational, and will server only as a novelty. I mean, how often is one around lava over the course of a game?

Re: Wefa the god of the elements

PostPosted: Friday, 29th July 2011, 21:02
by tazoz
I agree that the situational enhancements of ice and fire are a bit too situational, to solve this, the character can get the bonus also when adjutant to fire and ice clouds, so fire has conjure flame and ice has freezing cloud with immunity to fire and ice clouds this could add a nice synergy. Conjure flame is easier to cast but lava is rarer so it balances out.

I feel that straight enhancement of spells is a bit boring (too similar to vehumet) and situational enhancement would encourage using all the elements and adding tactical use of the terrain.

Galefury: I like the idea of elemental book gifting it's thematic and it would fit in with the rest of the magic gods gifting of spell books, I would say this is up to the developers as they seem to dislike gifting, the god could work without but it would be more interesting if he did gift the elemental books. (even if it's just the minor elemental ones.)

I intended for the opposing school penalty to be removed only while the player worships the god. It isn't such a great bonus as the cross training penalty is mainly thematic, the elemental schools aren't really better than any of the other schools, so training ice fire instead of ice translocations and then abandoning the god, isn't really a big deal.

Minmay, it is a major restriction but the elemental schools have enough utility spells to balance out the loss of the other schools. You have swiftness instead of haste (you can also use wands and potions), blink can be found on items and the freedom of movement (even through walls!) that the god provides will be a nice substitute to the loss of translocations, Necromancy has some great spells but the good gods have the same restriction. Hexes aren't really powerful as it is (for now) and you still have some nice summoning spells including a stronger summon elemental while abjuration can be cast from Rods. In other words the restriction isn't as massive as you implied, you can still cast deflect missiles, the armor spells, etc. The two most powerful poison spells can still be cast: poisonous cloud and mephic cloud.

The elemental schools have a great selection of spells, it would just mean relying on a different selection of spells.

I'll add the changes to the main post.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 1)

PostPosted: Friday, 29th July 2011, 21:56
by LunarHarp
It would be really easy to be next to fire if you had ring of flames.

Also an EE would be rather good still even without trans/charms etc. you will probably be hanging out around walls anyway.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 1)

PostPosted: Friday, 29th July 2011, 22:32
by tazoz
Minmay: You can get controlled teleport from a ring and controlled blink through scrolls(which don't burn as you have free conservation.). Also don't underestimate the power of free digging that doesn't cost an extra turn to cast, it can get you out of quite a few sticky situations. it's a different set of spells because of the removal of the opposing schools of magic additional cost, An air elementalist who trains earth instead of translocations, might lose controlled blink etc. but will gain a new selection of spells, unique to earth. (shatter, Tornado for example is a nice combo.)

Lunar: Yes, a nice bonus to ring of flames, which loses the bonus of immunity to fire clouds. (becomes redundant)
It's also easy getting the air bonus as you can just cast levitation in open space.
Also the earth bonus because diggable walls are abundant. (I might change this also to non diggable walls as long as it is not metallic)
The ice bonus because freezing cloud lasts for ages and is useful as it is, not to mention that water is quite common. Also the robe of clouds is quite fun in combination with this god as you can use the water it creates to your advantage and you get the magic bonus to ice.

I think the elements are quite balanced now.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 1)

PostPosted: Saturday, 30th July 2011, 00:38
by tazoz
Minmay you persuaded me, I changed it to non elemental offensive spells, so you can't cast the pure conjuration spells, the poison spells and necromancy offensive spells.

Without non elemental spells the god would be very weak in the extended game, which would make it a badly designed god.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 2)

PostPosted: Saturday, 30th July 2011, 01:23
by tazoz
Maybe you are right, adding unneccessary conducts just makes the god less fun to play and restricts the play style.

i removed the conduct and changed the piety gain so the god becomes an option for non spellcasters who kill with branded elemental weapons. (not the best option, but still an option)

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 3)

PostPosted: Saturday, 30th July 2011, 12:18
by dassem
I like this idea a lot, but I do have some -hopefully constructive- comments.

1. I think it feels like too much of a Vehumet variant. (Another god gifting books might be a no-no.)
Then two criticisms that apply to the whole game:
2. IMO there's too much in Crawl that favors casters over melee, and so does this god.
3. Some gods are useful late game, some early. Can this god do both without being overpowered?

So, why should someone choose your god?
Casters: Remove elemental cross-train penalties, get books, etc.
Everyone: Elemental resists.
Melee: ??? How would a non-caster have the elements "at their fingers"?

My suggestion to fix this would be to try to make it a viable option for non-casters too.
Maybe offer temporary elemental weapon branding, and abilities like elemental blasts (something like draconian breath), or summon elemental.
These could replace the "enhance" capabilities you currently have at 2 and 3 stars. (Maybe just a general boost to all elemental spells would be a good replacement too?)

This god would then be useful early, where an extra elemental resist, or the ability to throw flame/frost/air could save many starting characters.
I could also see it as being a nice god for a melee character: Being able to fill in your missing elemental resists for the hells, situationally choose the brand for your main weapon, and summon in the appropriate elemental(s) could all be helpful quite late into the game.

The obvious problem with my suggestion is that now I've lumped too much in to your idea. :-) But hopefully you can produce a balance...

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 3)

PostPosted: Saturday, 30th July 2011, 12:29
by Jeremiah
How about a god that does for the elements what Yred does for necromancy - ie allows use of elemental powers without the need to learn magic.

Maybe he could even forbid the use of elemental spells as they are an "unnatural" manipulation of the elements, and use invocations to grant spell-like abilities instead.

Though in this case, I don't know how you would gain piety - maybe by killing monsters with an elemental-branded weapon. Alternatively, his invocations could still use the elemental magic skills to determine their power, but not require spellcasting or memorising spells.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 3)

PostPosted: Monday, 1st August 2011, 08:58
by RFHolloway
Perhpas the god could grant an elemental weapon branding (with random element) as an invokable for MP + food and grant piety when kills were made with this active. Perhaps it would need to be damage done to balance it with other gods.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 3)

PostPosted: Monday, 1st August 2011, 13:58
by dpeg
dassem made good points.

As I see it, the proposal tries way the theme->mechanics conversion way too directly. This leads to the bias towards casting, and also makes the god bland: gifting books and resistances is not interesting, it turns a diety into a slot machine. (I am guilty for having made Cheibriados a stat machine of sorts, but there you have to pay with a conduct at least).

I believe that an elemental flavoured god could work, but I'd abstain from spell schools, resistances and weapon brands. Here are some ideas randomly thrown out -- no guarantees for usefulness.
1. I'd use all four elements (Earth, Air, Fire, Water).
2. I'd expect an elemental god to be one of balance. Players should strive for (better than forced towards) harmony.
3. A god power could be to ask for an elemental flavouring of a level.
4. Piety gain is the most crucial problem. Neither kills nor sacrifices seem appropriate. This leaves exploration but that ain't simple either.
5. Crapshoot idea: flavour exploration by giving piety when the player elementifies white > staircases on a level. (Caveat: three staircases, four elements.)
6. The strength of the god could come from resisting elemental threats by mimicry (defence) or from dealing more damage via the antagonistic element (attack).
7. I suggest not to provide allies -- too many god already do. It'd be fine if the god helps summoners indirectly (e.g. by providing what is needed for Summon Elemental).

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 3)

PostPosted: Monday, 1st August 2011, 15:38
by Roderic
I suggested some time ago a piety gain through exploring in bad conditions (while having low XP, hungry, sick, poison, etc.) although it is difficult to join with the flavour of the god and there are some issues to be taken into account to prevent abusing by poisoning / healing; perhaps punishing magic healing in some degree and only allow a good piety gain by natural healing... divagations.

Another possibility is to force the player to use by equal all the elemental powers, I mean , having the same number of invocations for each element OR casting for each elementary school. The closest to balance, the more piety you get. When you unbalance towards some element the piety decreases or even makes the god angry.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (revised 3)

PostPosted: Monday, 1st August 2011, 16:52
by Alg
What about giving piety for sacrifice but actually making sacrifice flavourful, just as Fedhas? More specifically, I've always liked how ignite poison make fire clouds out of poisonous corpses, so I'm thinking : why not give that god's worshippers the abily to transform all nearby corpses into random clouds (fire, ice, steam and for earth maybe mud?) We could call it"Extract elemental essence" or something like that.

-It synergises with the "enhanced spells around said element" thing
-It synergises with their ability to go through clouds unharmed
-It gives them the opportunity to use those clouds to summon elemental which could be quite flavourful too.
-It is original except for the aforementionned Ignite Poison for which it is quite gimmicky.

I think it could work quite well.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (completely new and revi

PostPosted: Thursday, 4th August 2011, 15:10
by tazoz
Thanks everyone for your comments, I feel that just exploring is a good enough piety mechanic when you add my new change surroundings ability.

I changed the god completely making it a more generalist god, tell me what you think.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (completely new and revi

PostPosted: Thursday, 4th August 2011, 19:03
by ElectricAlbatross
The * ability would be VERY annoying if you haven't gotten the ** ability yet. I'm imagining corridors being blocked by lava while exploring, while not yet being able to pass through them.

The Elemental Form idea is pretty cool, but with the elements only appearing randomly until **** it seems somewhat unpredictable and potentially even harmful. What if a lava patch appeared next to you while you were fighting an ice beast? What if you need to escape through a corridor from something that has Airstrike? I think the problem is the lack of control. Elemental forms would work much better as activated abilities, because players should have very precise control over something that has such huge effects on your resistances. So maybe you can have the forms be abilities on the 'a' screen, with the resistance effects happening anywhere but the elemental brand attacks taking effect only when near the element, flavoring it as "channeling the elemental energy" or something.

I think this god as a whole is too random, actually. For all the benefits you're supposed to get from being around the elements, how those elements show up in the dungeon is still completely out of the player's control. This is especially true for clouds, which seem completely dependent on being randomly created by the god, because I can't think of any places where clouds are formed naturally besides a few vaults.

So I would suggest taking out the ***** ability as well as maybe the * ability too, and replacing either with an ability to choose an element to put in the tiles around you or something. If you have gained the favor of the god of the elements, you should be expected to have some direct control over the elements instead of scattering them around all over the place. That would also be more fun and satisfying than waiting for your god do everything randomly.

One more thing: I like that your proposal is now more suited to melee characters, but if I were a player trying out a god of the elements, I would definitely expect the god to help with elemental magic, and would be disappointed if the only thing it did was removing elemental antitraining. I think that in your effort to make the god more generalist, you've made it actually just melee-oriented. Gifting books and restricting you to certain spell schools is boring, but just giving you a boost in the spell power of elemental spells when you're standing next to the corresponding element or in the corresponding elemental form or both would make the god competitive to Vehumet without doing the same thing as Vehumet.

So to recap:
Make Elemental Forms an (a)ctivated ability.
Give player more direct control over creating elemental patches.
Have the god help out a little with casting elemental spells.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 2)

PostPosted: Thursday, 4th August 2011, 19:41
by tazoz
Electric, selective creation feels to me too powerful.

but I did take your advice to heart, the elemental ground creation now cannot block passages (also makes it less powerful as you could just escape across the lava to get away from creatures)and happens out of sight unless you invoke it, the elemental forms now enchance elements and also the branding overwrites previous branding as long as you are changed (not a suggestion but fun).

To solve the hallway problem I changed the absorb elements to have an overwriting effect so if you cast it and are attacked with air, you will be hit once and change to an air elemental.

Is the idea too convoluted, should I simplify it?

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 2)

PostPosted: Friday, 5th August 2011, 10:27
by Galefury
I don't think it's convoluted. Elemental stuff shows up, you change form next to it, and there are abilities to spawn elemental stuff and override your natural form when needed. I agree with ElectricAlbatross that some bonus for casters would feel natural. Elemental Balance seems nice, but at high piety cost it's just not something you can rely on being able to use a lot. Enhanced elemental spell power when in elemental form would be nice. Possibly they could also inhibit the opposite element. Immunity to clouds corresponding to your form would also be nice.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 2)

PostPosted: Friday, 5th August 2011, 11:22
by tazoz
Thanks Gale, I added your suggestions.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 2)

PostPosted: Friday, 5th August 2011, 19:37
by ElectricAlbatross
I still think the best and simplest way to handle Elemental Forms is to make it an ability the player activates from the [a] screen like most invocations instead of an automatic effect. Transforming has huge drawbacks as well as benefits, so it's a significant problem if it automatically happens under certain conditions whether the player wants it or not. I wouldn't want to have to worry about stepping away from a wall every time I want to cast an air spell. And what if I want to cast Flight and Swiftness as I'm escaping through a corridor (or just run away through a corridor, even)? In addition, depending on the level layout and how the patch placing is implemented, it may be difficult to find a location by a cloud or a wall that isn't also next to higher-priority elements. So as you can see, making use of elemental forms is tedious and even dangerous if it happens automatically, and also requires a weird priority system among the elements, which would be completely unintuitive for any player trying to use the god.

So I have a couple of alternatives for your consideration:

1. Elemental transformation can be activated anywhere using the [a]bilities screen. The form gives full effects when you are near or on the corresponding element, but when used anywhere else, it only gives the resistance effects and the casting hindrance for the opposite element. The form can be cancelled from the [a] screen, just like any other transmutation spell. Or:
2. Elemental transformation can be activated from the [a]bilities screen, but only if you are standing next to the corresponding element. The form is cancelled if you are no longer near the element, or can be cancelled from the [a] screen just like any other transmutation spell.

Both of these suggestions will let players choose when to take on an elemental form and—more importantly—when not to take on an elemental form.

This is the only big problem I see with this god suggestion, though; the rest is awesome, so if you can fix this little bit, then I would be all for putting this god in the game.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 3)

PostPosted: Saturday, 6th August 2011, 12:33
by tazoz
Electric, thanks for your suggestion, I agree with you, the ability would be annoying if the change happens automatically especially when auto exploring. I changed it to a 2 mana activated ability.

I changed the duration of manipulate elements to three turns as the ability itself is really powerful, it acts as a sort of time stop when used in corridors, giving you three turns to act before the wall breaks down, allowing you to teleport away, heal yourself or cast buffs and you can renew it. It's still a situational ability so it's not too powerful, but three turns felt about right.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 3)

PostPosted: Saturday, 6th August 2011, 13:32
by Roderic
I haven't read the discussion thoroughly, but my feelings about this god are oriented towards a god that provides ability over the elements to non caster (melee) backgrounds rather than to buffing casters (i.e., not a god for magicians); although elementalists can benefit from being not handicapped any more when learning some opposite school to its initial one.

Re: Wafetri the god of the elements (new and revised 4)

PostPosted: Saturday, 6th August 2011, 17:21
by tazoz
Roderic, The god is a generalist god, casters get enhanced spells, lower resistance to enemies thus higher damage and a few escape options.

I added a new longer description of the god and changed elemental form's casting mechanic .