The Deflect Missiles experience


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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 06:33

The Deflect Missiles experience

You know what's more annoying than recasting Deflect Missiles every time its duration runs out? Taking off your armour, switching two rings, casting it, switching two rings, and putting on your armour every time it breaks.

Deflect Missiles was changed here, presumably with the expectation that a "permabuff" system that fixes this swapping problem would be introduced soon. Well, it's been 1718 days, and DCSS is no closer to having said system than it was 1718 days ago. So please either remove Deflect Missiles or make it break when moving like Ozocubu's Armour. If you ever make a permabuff system you can always bring DMsl back.
And if you love the DMsl status light you can always change scarves of repulsion and Amulet of the Air to give DMsl instead of RMsl. They'll still be worse than spirit shield.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 07:09

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Make dMissiles check its failure rate every time it would successfully block a projectile, and if it fails that check than delete the buff instead of blocking the projectile. That way there's no scumming with it, but mages who were going to use it "normally/honestly" anyways are barely affected and the spell could stand to take a 5-10% efficiency nerf anyways as it is still pretty good overall.

Following this formula, rMissiles could even be reintroduced unless the issue with that spell was that even without scumming it was still a no brainer.

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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 08:24

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

charlatan wrote:Make dMissiles check its failure rate every time it would successfully block a projectile, and if it fails that check than delete the buff instead of blocking the projectile.
This does not solve the problem. A character with, say, a 50% fail rate in their armour will still benefit from taking off their armour to recast it.

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nago, petercordia
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Slime Squisher

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 15:10

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Make it a very strong effect but make it last like 5 turns?

This does not solve the problem. A character with, say, a 50% fail rate in their armour will still benefit from taking off their armour to recast it.


Or maye. If it fails upon deflect, add a chance of miscast (like actual minor magic miscast) depending on your fail rate? Sounds cruel but fun.

Alternatively, simply make the spell expire if you swap any piece of armor.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 15:27

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

duvessa wrote:
charlatan wrote:Make dMissiles check its failure rate every time it would successfully block a projectile, and if it fails that check than delete the buff instead of blocking the projectile.
This does not solve the problem. A character with, say, a 50% fail rate in their armour will still benefit from taking off their armour to recast it.


It's still an improvement over the current system, and getting 50% would require some amount of investment. In your case it would only have a 12% chance to even do anything anyways.

Halls Hopper

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 15:30

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Pereza0 wrote:Alternatively, simply make the spell expire if you swap any piece of armor.

This is probably the simplest fix. Gear-swapping to make a spell castable and then swapping back to something else after casting is the sort of "optimal" behavior that should probably be discouraged. The same principles could be applied to other buffs, too.

It could be reflavored as the spells being cast on the equipment rather than the caster (i.e. "A haze of deflective energy surrounds your +0 ring mail") or as the re-equipping of the gear breaking the spell (i.e. "Your +5 Crystal Plate Armour of the Weasel disturbs the magical energies around you!").

Lair Larrikin

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 17:48

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

duvessa wrote:You know what's more annoying than recasting Deflect Missiles every time its duration runs out? Taking off your armour, switching two rings, casting it, switching two rings, and putting on your armour every time it breaks.


If someone wants to waste that much of their short, precious time on this earth in the name of "optimal play", I say let them.

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 19:17

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Pereza0 wrote:Alternatively, simply make the spell expire if you swap any piece of armor.
Again, there are still other pieces of equipment with wizardry, strength and intelligence bonuses.

DCSS's spell system is not set up to handle out-of-combat spells. That's a big part of why so many spells were removed (divinations, Alter Self, Fulsome Distillation...). That's the reason DMsl originally expired with time in the first place! Failure rates, MP costs, spell power - these mechanics only make sense during combat. If you want to hand out a bonus that doesn't require spending extra turns in combat, then don't make it a spell. Deflect Missiles is not the only spell with this problem (glares at battlesphere) but it's by far the worst instance of it because it doesn't even expire with time.

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Shoals Surfer

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 19:32

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Even better idea:

Unpair the armour you are wearing from the spell success formula. Armour barely has an equivalent effect on melee and ranged, which require less xp overall than several schools of magic. Then, people won't be tempted to switch their armour on and off to cast this spell. I don't think trying to prevent ring swaps, stat sticks and wizardry staffs is worthwhile, that is already governed by inventory space and are quicker to swap, so changing them before combat is less of a tactical advantage. Why isn't it enough that your skill with spellcasting and spells and mana pool is enough??

Why? Because deflect missiles isn't the only spell that you could try to cast out of combat to try to gain an advantage. In order for the "anti-degenerate" play here being suggested to be effective across the board, you would have to redesign a large number of all the spells.

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 19:38

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

svendre wrote:Because deflect missiles isn't the only spell that you could try to cast out of combat to try to gain an advantage. In order for the "anti-degenerate" play here being suggested to be effective across the board, you would have to redesign a large number of all the spells.
While this is true, the balance fallout from removing armour spell success penalties would be much harder and require much more work to fix - and at the end of it, both armour and spells would be less interesting.
You don't have to change that many spells. The culprits are buffs (which are already almost gone), summons with long durations, and the occasional goofy incident like apporting an item off a trap. And these would still have the out-of-combat problem even if you removed armour penalties, so you need to change these spells anyway!

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Shoals Surfer

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 19:44

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

duvessa wrote:
svendre wrote:Because deflect missiles isn't the only spell that you could try to cast out of combat to try to gain an advantage. In order for the "anti-degenerate" play here being suggested to be effective across the board, you would have to redesign a large number of all the spells.
While this is true, the balance fallout from removing armour spell success penalties would be much harder and require much more work to fix - and at the end of it, both armour and spells would be less interesting.
You don't have to change that many spells. The culprits are buffs (which are already almost gone), summons with long durations, and the occasional goofy incident like apporting an item off a trap. And these would still have the out-of-combat problem even if you removed armour penalties, so you need to change these spells anyway!


I agree with you that re-balancing from a change like this would be more difficult. It just so happens that I believe this area of the game needs rebalancing anyways though and the final outcome would be the best. There are even more scenarios than what you listed which would need adjusting, off the top of my head - transmutations (which remove your armour so that you could potentially cast deflect missiles more easily, or *any* other spell you couldn't cast before). I don't think it would really be all that simple once you start getting into the details.

Ziggurat Zagger

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Joined: Tuesday, 30th October 2012, 19:06

Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 22:09

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

My suggestion would look like:

  • Expire all status-giving self-targeting spells (but not consumables or hostile enchantments) when you remove, wear or meld any equipment (jewelry and weapons included)
  • Duration based spells that effect the environment (summons, clouds, animate etc.) are confined to your LOS at casting (if mobile), and expire the turn after they leave your LOS.
  • Convert some of the "effects self" spells to "effects monsters" or "effects environment" spells.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Thursday, 11th October 2018, 23:08

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Siegurt wrote:Expire all status-giving self-targeting spells (but not consumables or hostile enchantments) when you remove, wear or meld any equipment (jewelry and weapons included)

brutal transmuter nerfs

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duvessa, nago

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 12th October 2018, 00:57

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

CanOfWorms wrote:
Siegurt wrote:Expire all status-giving self-targeting spells (but not consumables or hostile enchantments) when you remove, wear or meld any equipment (jewelry and weapons included)

brutal transmuter nerfs

Having to cast buffs after you cast transmutations is "brutal"? I mean It's a nerf, but I wouldn't categorize it as 'brutal'
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 12th October 2018, 01:44

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Siegurt wrote:
CanOfWorms wrote:
Siegurt wrote:Expire all status-giving self-targeting spells (but not consumables or hostile enchantments) when you remove, wear or meld any equipment (jewelry and weapons included)

brutal transmuter nerfs

Having to cast buffs after you cast transmutations is "brutal"? I mean It's a nerf, but I wouldn't categorize it as 'brutal'
The joke is that transmutations are status-giving self-targeting spells, so if read literally, your suggestion would make forms end instantly unless you took off your armour first.

Shoals Surfer

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Post Friday, 12th October 2018, 03:13

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Good one.

Dungeon Master

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Post Friday, 12th October 2018, 03:18

Re: The Deflect Missiles experience

Siegurt wrote:Having to cast buffs after you cast transmutations is "brutal"? I mean It's a nerf, but I wouldn't categorize it as 'brutal'

I mean you have 2 forms that explicitly give a wizardry penalty

duvessa wrote:The joke is that transmutations are status-giving self-targeting spells, so if read literally, your suggestion would make forms end instantly unless you took off your armour first.

not necromutation! (unless you're wielding a holy weapon)

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