Give backrounds consumables on start


Although the central place for this kind of discussion is on the CDO wiki, some may find it helpful to discuss potential requests and suggestions here first.

Lair Larrikin

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 07:19

Give backrounds consumables on start

1) Newbies can learn how to use consumables from a start
2) More options in early game means less no brainers (vs. just run away)
3) A bit more fair, skill dependent early game

And fighter starts with a Potion of might so precedence was already made.

Here is a list:

Fighter (Fi) – Potion of might (x2?)
Gladiator (Gl) - Have Nets/More throwing/More Nets
Monk (Mo) - Potion of heal wounds
Hunter (Hu) - potion of agility
Assassin (As) - potion of invisibility
Berserker (Be) – Have Trog (or give couple potions of berserk rage, remove Trog)
Abyssal Knight (AK) - Potion of cancellation
Chaos Knight (CK) - Scroll of immolation (Xom laughter)
Skald (Sk) - potion of haste
Enchanter (En) - Scroll of vulnerability
Transmuter (Tm) - Potion of lignification
Arcane Marksman (AM) - Scroll of fog
Warper (Wr) – Scroll of blinking
Wizard (Wz) – Scroll of teleportation
Conjurer (Cj) - Potion of brilliance
Summoner (Su) - Scroll of summoning
Necromancer (Ne) - Scroll of fear
Fire Elementalist (FE) - Potion of magic
Ice Elementalist (IE) - Potion of magic
Air Elementalist (AE) - Potion of magic
Earth Elementalist (EE) – Potion of magic
Venom Mage (VM) - Potion of ambrosia
Artificer (Ar) - Wand of Scattershot one charge
Wanderer (Wn) - random

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Shoals Surfer

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 07:58

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

More consumables on start for all backgrounds = easier game = boredom

This is not a very good idea imo, DCSS should be moving towards adding more difficulty than away from it.

Although, I can understand the intent. A lot of earlygame situations are just solved by running away, not engaging, or pillar dancing, so these resources would allow for more diverse tactics, but giving good consumables to all backgrounds is a huge boost in player power across the board which is fairly undesirable.

Most recent changes relating to player power have been about reducing it, not increasing it.
16/26 on the way to GreaterOctopode (Win all backgrounds as an Octopode)

Progress so far : OpFi, OpGl, OpWn, OpAr, OpCK, OpMo, OpBe, OpHu, OpVM, OpAM, OpWr, OpFE, OpEE, OpNe, OpTm, OpSk

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 08:07

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

My favourite part of this list is that it suggests giving Wr a scroll of blinking

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Vajrapani

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 09:24

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

If this makes the early game too easy, just make the early game more difficult (via harder monsters or less starting skill)

I like the idea. I especially like how you suggest giving most backgrounds a potion which amplifies their strength.
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 10:42

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Why give AM a scroll of fog?
...SENeGEFEMDBeDDFiHOWzVpVMHuEE{HEMoDEHuDDAs}{HaBeKoAK}CeVM{MfWnMiAK}TeAMDrIE{FoVMVSFi}
{MuVMGhGlVpMo}HaWrSpWz{OgGlTrMo}{CeWnMfBeMiSk}DrEE{GrFiFoGl}DgEnFeNe{OpGlHuSu}
DDArHaCKSpAEGrTmDgFEDsCjGhMoHuVM{HaAMBaEn}{HuMoHOWn}DsWzDDHu{DgWnGnBe}FeIE{MiEnMfCj}SpNe

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 11:41

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Vajrapani wrote:More consumables on start for all backgrounds = easier game = boredom

This is not a very good idea imo, DCSS should be moving towards adding more difficulty than away from it.

Indeed, there are a lot of players who think that Crawl is too easy. I would say probably 20, maybe 30.
Also, there are a few thousand players for whom Crawl is hard.

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Mines Malingerer

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 12:46

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

1) Newbies can learn how to use consumables from a start

What exactly do you mean by "from the start" here? You can already get a handful of consumables in like 150-200 turns. Do you want to specifically give new players the opportunity of trying out what their scroll/potion does on turn 1? That's maybe interesting but barely would help someone learn the game.
2) More options in early game means less no brainers (vs. just run away)
Well, running away is still pretty damn strong later in the game. Also, determining if walking away is a good option seems pretty straightforward in the early game and having a tele/blink/fear doesn't really create any choice here ("combat" consumables at least create "fight or run" sort of choice).
3) A bit more fair, skill dependent early game
If anything, I think this is the problem with entrance vaults (I automatically hate anything with translucent walls) and monster generation rather than having/not having consumables.

Overall I don't think this change is something bad but I fail to see any rationale behind it.

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bel

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 13:29

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

I have proposed something like this before. My proposal was simpler: every character starts with a potion of curing and a scroll of teleport (both identified). I don't mind giving each background a different starting item.

The rationale is simple: early game randomly killing you has no point. It's meaningless and should be eliminated. Meaningful randomness is fine. One simple way to make things meaningful is to have randomness, while simultaneously giving limited "outs" for the outlier and/or unfair situations.

Halls Hopper

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 13:36

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Stairdancer wrote:
1) Newbies can learn how to use consumables from a start

What exactly do you mean by "from the start" here? You can already get a handful of consumables in like 150-200 turns. Do you want to specifically give new players the opportunity of trying out what their scroll/potion does on turn 1? That's maybe interesting but barely would help someone learn the game.
2) More options in early game means less no brainers (vs. just run away)
Well, running away is still pretty damn strong later in the game. Also, determining if walking away is a good option seems pretty straightforward in the early game and having a tele/blink/fear doesn't really create any choice here ("combat" consumables at least create "fight or run" sort of choice).
3) A bit more fair, skill dependent early game
If anything, I think this is the problem with entrance vaults (I automatically hate anything with translucent walls) and monster generation rather than having/not having consumables.

Overall I don't think this change is something bad but I fail to see any rationale behind it.


To learn to use consumables properly, you need to have a useful, identified potion or scroll in your inventory, which might not happen until a few floors in.

If running away would still be strong, you're proving the OP's point, which is that with consumables you have at least two plausible options, therefore no nobrainers.

It would be more fair, because if you have a emergency consumable ready, you need two instances of really bad luck for it to be game over. This can be avoided more reliably by a skilled player than a single instance of bad luck.

Mines Malingerer

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 14:04

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

bel wrote:The rationale is simple: early game randomly killing you has no point. It's meaningless and should be eliminated. Meaningful randomness is fine. One simple way to make things meaningful is to have randomness, while simultaneously giving limited "outs" for the outlier and/or unfair situations.
I agree to a point. But your addition seem a bit too advantageous. I'd suggest just 1 extra potion for every class: Potion of Lignification. In general it's not a very good potion, and soon you get better consumables, and by mid-game you may simply get rid of them. So it's doesn't screw with the power dynamics much. However early in the game it's a huge help, especially against bees and snakes: the combination of speed and poison makes them extremely risky early in the game, and not something you can just run away from.

Crypt Cleanser

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 14:44

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

duvessa wrote:My favourite part of this list is that it suggests giving Wr a scroll of blinking
I don't get it.

Halls Hopper

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 14:56

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Sprucery wrote:Why give AM a scroll of fog?


I agree, I don't see how the scroll of fog helps the AM.
Because I find the AM really hard in the early dungeon, of give them good consumables: 1 scroll of torment, 1 scroll of immolation, and 1 potion of lignification. :)

Halls Hopper

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 16:54

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

I'd suggest that giving them a consumable is not a bad thing - more options makes for more interesting gameplay, fewer stupid deaths, and, frankly, more players who are likely to stick with the game instead of quitting after the third time they splat on D1.

Lignification would be a good example. Ambrosia might be another. Or a wand of random effects (though that would give early Evo access), or even something like a special Nemelex-free deck with a couple weak cards. Anything that's consumable, potentially helpful, but weak enough that it wouldn't be a first-choice item later on. So no heal wounds, haste, might, etc., but something that could still be called on as a potential lifesaver in the early dungeon.

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Lair Larrikin

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 18:06

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

For me difficulty of Dungeon Crawl looks like this:

Early game = to hard, to random
Middle game = bit to easy
Late game = to easy, with powerfull char you can trivalize 99 % of enemies, tab fest starts to kick in and most deaths comes from inattention i. e. boredom.

Giving one consumable on start makes easier only early game. One more consumable in your backpack when you actually have plenty of them does not make any difference.

Vajrapani wrote:Most recent changes relating to player power have been about reducing it, not increasing it.


There are no changes that make early game harder (it's to hard). Most changes reduces player power in the late game - less xp, dangerous non trivial monsters. You can always make mid/late game harder to preserve overall difficulty

Magipi wrote:Indeed, there are a lot of players who think that Crawl is too easy. I would say probably 20, maybe 30. Also, there are a few thousand players for whom Crawl is hard.


And i bet that majority of these players consider early game as hardest part of the game (minus Tomb)

Sprucery wrote:Why give AM a scroll of fog?


I thought that LOS control for AM would be fluffy for them, but right, fog is situational, worse then other free out of jail consumables, better for melee, so maybe replace it with the immolation scroll.

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 18:15

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

bel wrote:The rationale is simple: early game randomly killing you has no point. It's meaningless and should be eliminated.
It's already been eliminated.

Vestibule Violator

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 21:41

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

duvessa wrote:
bel wrote:The rationale is simple: early game randomly killing you has no point. It's meaningless and should be eliminated.
It's already been eliminated.


http://crawl.akrasiac.org/rawdata/rast/ ... 042719.txt

Tomb Titivator

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Post Wednesday, 17th October 2018, 22:11

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

This would be a good feature for a fork to pick up

bel

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Post Thursday, 18th October 2018, 14:32

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

duvessa wrote:
bel wrote:The rationale is simple: early game randomly killing you has no point. It's meaningless and should be eliminated.
It's already been eliminated.

No idea what this means.

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Thursday, 18th October 2018, 16:23

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

DCSS's early game doesn't randomly kill you.

bel

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Post Thursday, 18th October 2018, 16:31

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Really? Gnolls outside entry vaults in D:1 don't happen anymore? And can adders generate on D:1?

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Thursday, 18th October 2018, 16:38

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

bel wrote:Really? Gnolls outside entry vaults in D:1 don't happen anymore? And can adders generate on D:1?

Unfair deaths on D:1 aren't random, they are malicious, the game is specifically out to get you when this happens.
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Dungeon Master

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Post Thursday, 18th October 2018, 21:16

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

bel wrote:And can adders generate on D:1?

they can't (except for decorative purposes in entry vaults)

Crypt Cleanser

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Post Thursday, 18th October 2018, 22:21

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

They can't generate on D:1 but iirc there's a chance that a monster that can generate on the floor below generates next to the down stairs on your current level after x turns have passed, or something like that. Basically an adder can spawn on the down stairs in D:1 while you're exploring. It's not the same thing as OOD timer spawns, although maybe it was removed with them. Idk maybe I'm misremembering and this doesn't exist.

Dungeon Master

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Post Thursday, 18th October 2018, 23:46

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

monsters do not spawn after initial generation anymore

Temple Termagant

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 01:08

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Starting with these or at least having these already identified would make sense, I do find the first few levels the hardest, though I do play Spriggan Stabbers which is especially hard early game. Many of my lost games, I have died before reaching level 2 because of bad rolls.

bel

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 01:31

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

It's not clear to me on what basis the claim that "early game doesn't randomly kill you" is made. It's hard to respond to bare assertion.

Rast posted a morgue above, which probably falls in the "game randomly kills you" category.

Here's another simple scenario: a hobgoblin on D:1 gets a few good rolls and gets you down to 2 HP. You have no consumables, so you have to pillar dance. One of the monsters generated awake finds you while pillar dancing. The end. How's this not meaninglessly random?

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 02:25

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Or some hobgob with a good weapon just one hit kills you. Or you find a swarm of mobs nearby when you start out and have no way to constrict them or run from them. Or gnolls or some higher level mob randomly generates. Or you fall 3 floors down from a trap and get killed by things way beyond what you can handle. Or...

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 07:17

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Is it still possible to get a monster with distortion weapon on D:1?
Underestimated: cleaving, Deep Elf, Formicid, Vehumet, EV
Overestimated: AC, GDS
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Slime Squisher

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 12:17

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Streaking is cool because it actually takes a bit of effort for good players to get to Lair and faceroll from there (though I must say Crawl has gotten a lot harder from that point compared to what it was a long time ago).

If you give extra tools so that streaking is easy even with hard combos it isn't as cool anymore. Difficulty spikes are one of the cool parts of crawl and if you are playing hard combos, they can be deadly. If you make Crawl so that weak combos never get shafted or get OOD spawns you are making the game more boring for everyone else.

Good players can still mitigate bad luck in a number of ways (though some tedious like manual exploring to avoid open areas and keep exits close).

Anyway, you can still tell who good players are looking at their winrate. Someone like me has a 2% winrate or less. Someone good can get 80% and probably higher depending on how hard they are pushing themselves with their combos. Even in Hearthstone there are players better than others and that game is mostly a dice roll, where the best player winrate doesn't go about 60%.

Do we really want all good Crawl players to have a perfect 100% winrate? Because this seems to be OP's goal

truepurple wrote:Spriggan Stabbers which is especially hard early game. Many of my lost games, I have died before reaching level 2 because of bad rolls.


I would love to see the games in which you got these "bad rolls". Spriggans are one of the strongest early game species IMO, their advantages (speed, size advantages, aptitudes) are in full swing while their negatives (equipment disadvantages) still have not kicked in. The only D1 enemy who could be considered a threat are dart slugs, maybe kobolds with equipment and they can still be outran easily

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 13:54

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Pereza0 wrote:Do we really want all good Crawl players to have a perfect 100% winrate? Because this seems to be OP's goal

This is exactly what happened when the fighter background was given a potion of might to start with. Before that, the players' winrate with fighters was around 2%, then it became 100%. Amazing!

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Slime Squisher

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 15:25

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Magipi wrote:
Pereza0 wrote:Do we really want all good Crawl players to have a perfect 100% winrate? Because this seems to be OP's goal

This is exactly what happened when the fighter background was given a potion of might to start with. Before that, the players' winrate with fighters was around 2%, then it became 100%. Amazing!


I am not saying this will make winrates skyrocket for the average player (when I say good player, I meant really good player, the sort of player that can get 6+ streaks on a variety of backgrounds). I am asking if the goal of these changes is to try delete the possiblity of loss when playing optimally early on. Because this kind of seems the spirit of some of the suggestions in this thread

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 15:42

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Pereza0 wrote:
Magipi wrote:
Pereza0 wrote:Do we really want all good Crawl players to have a perfect 100% winrate? Because this seems to be OP's goal

This is exactly what happened when the fighter background was given a potion of might to start with. Before that, the players' winrate with fighters was around 2%, then it became 100%. Amazing!


I am not saying this will make winrates skyrocket for the average player (when I say good player, I meant really good player, the sort of player that can get 6+ streaks on a variety of backgrounds). I am asking if the goal of these changes is to try delete the possiblity of loss when playing optimally early on. Because this kind of seems the spirit of some of the suggestions in this thread


I think that is the aim, and in line with the design goals: You should not die if you play optimally.

Halls Hopper

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 16:28

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Pereza0 wrote:I am not saying this will make winrates skyrocket for the average player (when I say good player, I meant really good player, the sort of player that can get 6+ streaks on a variety of backgrounds). I am asking if the goal of these changes is to try delete the possiblity of loss when playing optimally early on. Because this kind of seems the spirit of some of the suggestions in this thread

Pereza0 wrote:Do we really want all good Crawl players to have a perfect 100% winrate? Because this seems to be OP's goal

As a variety of people have pointed out (and demonstrated), a truly "optimal" player can already win most of their games if he or she wants, disrupted only by the occasional unavoidable death (which, in the early game, can be due to lack of options) or inattention. Even more so if they're willing to stick to strong combos, instead of seeing how many 15-rune, multi-zig MuMo^Trog they can streak.

If the only possibility of early-game loss for "optimal" players is unavoidable deaths, that still doesn't mean unavoidable deaths are good. If this makes winrates skyrocket for the top-tier player that you're talking about, that's probably due to the early game having been too hard, and the late-game too easy, when the opposite should be true.

Remember that last year's big statistical breakdown of players showed that more than 90% of players have never won a game, and that of those who have, they tend to win perhaps 1% of their games. Even in the tournaments, which tend to involve lots of games from the top-tier players, the most recent tourney shows a winrate below 3%.

I'd argue that it'd be worth the risk of pushing a half dozen or so people from, say, 70% wins to 90% wins, if it pushed the % of people who've won a game, and the average winrate, a littler higher. Not to mention that it'd probably do wonders for player retention, considering how many players are likely to stop playing long before they hit 100+ winless games.

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 19:10

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

petercordia wrote:I think that is the aim, and in line with the design goals: You should not die if you play optimally.
The design philosophy specifically says the opposite of that.
  Code:
The possibility of unavoidable deaths is a larger topic in computer games.
Ideally, a game like this would be really challenging and have both random
layout and random course of action, yet still be winnable with perfect
play. This goal seems out of reach. Thus, computer games can be soft in the
sense that optimal play ensures a win. Apart from puzzles, though, this
means that the game is solved from the outset; this is where the lack of a
human game-master is obvious. Alternatively, they can be hard in the sense
that unavoidable deaths can occur. We feel that the latter choice provides
much more fun in the long run.

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 19:41

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

bel wrote:Rast posted a morgue above, which probably falls in the "game randomly kills you" category.

Here's another simple scenario: a hobgoblin on D:1 gets a few good rolls and gets you down to 2 HP. You have no consumables, so you have to pillar dance. One of the monsters generated awake finds you while pillar dancing. The end. How's this not meaninglessly random?


I'm a little biased here, but my scenario feels more unfair, even if the ultimate chance of death was lower.

Especially from a new player experience perspective. At least their guy is getting to fight, instead of having to walk in a spiral for 30 turns while a dart slug pings away at your HP.

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Post Friday, 19th October 2018, 23:05

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Do this, then halve consumable generation and xp for the remainder of the game and you might start taking things in an interesting direction.
Remove spell hunger.

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Lair Larrikin

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Post Tuesday, 23rd October 2018, 04:47

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

I read comments how is this proposal is going to shake up game balance and winning streaks - are we talking about same game in witch you can start with both free might and free healing (DDFi) or unlimited supply of berserk potions (hi Trog)?

so i changed my reasoning:

give one, small, tiny consumable to backgrounds because it would further differentiate backgrounds and "consumables are fun"

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Post Tuesday, 23rd October 2018, 17:43

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Potion of cancellation is not fun.

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Post Tuesday, 23rd October 2018, 18:58

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

radzia wrote:I read comments how is this proposal is going to shake up game balance and winning streaks - are we talking about same game in witch you can start with both free might and free healing (DDFi) or unlimited supply of berserk potions (hi Trog)?
Are we talking about the same game? In my version of Crawl there are more than two backgrounds and more than one species.
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Slime Squisher

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Post Saturday, 27th October 2018, 13:01

Re: Give backrounds consumables on start

Having thought about it I do think there are some specific backgrounds that could use some starting consumable, to try and make them have a bit more parity with other backgrounds and also make them more fun while also teaching consumable usage. I don't think every background needs it, and there are already backgrounds that have them anyway.

I definitely think Fighter definitely doesnt need more might potions and that Gl doesn't need any more nets. Giving haste to Skald on the other hand would be a nice way of making it a slightly more appealing background, and also a nice compensation for Haste not being available through Charms anymore. Also, makes sense thematically

On the other hand, I agree with the point of making less straightforward consumables available from level 1 on some backgrounds as a learning tool. A single vulnerability scroll will probably not make a massive difference in your Enchanter playthrough, not many magic resistant enemies early on anyway. But it will still be fun to use it, and probably a great risk-free way for new player to try it out on level 1 and understand how to use it in other situations

Having a background with scroll of Fog early on would also be great for this reason, would be thematically fun on Assassin (I think AM already has enough tools). I don't think Assassins really need it, but it is a great way to show new players how LoS works and how to abuse removing LoS from level 1, and how higher stealth makes enemies forget about you really fast if you remove LoS by any means.

On the other hand, potions like Berserk, Magic, Summoning, Brilliance are pretty simple to understand and use, and powerful in a more straightforward way. I don't think there is much to learn from them by giving them the D:1 treatment

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