Too many Evo items.


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Spider Stomper

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 13:20

Too many Evo items.

The game has 11 wands and 11 miscellaneous(Include the tremorstone), a total of 22. There are too many. I think we should reduce the number of items as much as possible. Here are some ideas I think.
Example)
Remove Wand of Digging/Enslavement/Flame/Paralysis/Polymorph
Include digging in Disintegration: If you use it against the wall, dig up a wall.
Change the list of Wand of Random effects:
List - throw flame, throw frost, bolt of draining, venom bolt, paralyze, confuse, slow, polymorph, enslavement.
If apply this change, wands will be reduced from 11 to 6.

Remove Box of beasts, Crystal ball of energy, Fan of gales.
Horn of Geryon: Summon mutant beast instead of hell beasts.
Phantom Mirror: In addition to the existing effects, recover MP in proportion to target HD and player Evo skill.
If apply this change, miscellaneous will be reduced from 11 to 8.
If apply this change, total will be reduced from 22 to 14.


How do you think you should change?

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 13:48

Re: Too many Evo items.

I'd be in favour of randomly removing some types of evo items from every game

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 14:18

Re: Too many Evo items.

petercordia wrote:I'd be in favour of randomly removing some types of evo items from every game


Yes, this sounds like a good idea. I think that a game also doesn't need to have all three hex wands.

Mixing up acid and digging was an old idea that I like.
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Spider Stomper

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 14:25

Re: Too many Evo items.

Shtopit wrote:Mixing up acid and digging was an old idea that I like.

Well, this sounds good.
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Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 14:29

Re: Too many Evo items.

petercordia wrote:I'd be in favour of randomly removing some types of evo items from every game


This is by far the best solution. Should be applied to potion and scroll types as well.
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Dungeon Dilettante

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 22:42

Re: Too many Evo items.

I don't see the problem with any of the evocable item. You don't need to carry them all around. Every one of them has a good use.

As far as suggestions go, randomly removing some of them form the game could break a lot of vaults (since the digging wand and shatter are only ways to dig now, unless you want to use fedhas just to get into a certain vault).

Crypt Cleanser

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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 23:11

Re: Too many Evo items.

Lici_the_Crawler wrote: You don't need to carry them all around. Every one of them has a good use.

This is a pretty good articulation of the problem, actually. If every consumable has a good use then I want to carry all of them around. Leads to a lot of time spent on inventory management rather than playing the game proper.

Wrt digging, there are several possible solutions. You could exempt digging from consumable roulette. You could remove vaults that require digging (there are not that many of these, and most of the existing ones are not interesting). You could remove digging entirely, though I suspect that this will be an unpopular option. In any case, I don't think it's a major impediment to implementing item roulettes. For randomly removing consumable types to be satisfying, you want the consumable types to be relatively distinct from one another but also about as strong as one another. Approaching that problem is the tricky part imo.
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Post Wednesday, 12th February 2020, 23:43

Re: Too many Evo items.

I think different effect patterns were considered for digging in the past. Combining the digging effect with both the acid and scattershot effects (perhaps renaming the latter to something like blasting) and doing the roulette thing on these two types would probably work. Total reduction of two wand types per game, not bad.
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Dungeon Dilettante

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Post Thursday, 13th February 2020, 08:59

Re: Too many Evo items.

Good uses come at different times in the game so you don't really need to carry them all all the time. For example I drop my wands of flame after shoals/swamp. Random effects wands get dumped as soon as I have a way to kill most annoying stuff like 2 headed ogres instead of hoping for a lucky roll with a wand. I also drop disintegration around vaults since I prefer using hex wands (ideally I spent all my disintegration charges by the). If you instead dropped all the scrolls and potions that you aren't going to need asap (flying, remove curse, mutation, enchant weapon/armour, brand weapon, flying, brill if you never plan on casting any spells, identify, amnesia).

Swamp Slogger

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Post Thursday, 13th February 2020, 14:48

Re: Too many Evo items.

Lici_the_Crawler wrote:Good uses come at different times in the game so you don't really need to carry them all all the time. For example I drop my wands of flame after shoals/swamp. Random effects wands get dumped as soon as I have a way to kill most annoying stuff like 2 headed ogres instead of hoping for a lucky roll with a wand. I also drop disintegration around vaults since I prefer using hex wands (ideally I spent all my disintegration charges by the). If you instead dropped all the scrolls and potions that you aren't going to need asap (flying, remove curse, mutation, enchant weapon/armour, brand weapon, flying, brill if you never plan on casting any spells, identify, amnesia).

Yes, exactly:
Hellmonk wrote:Leads to a lot of time spent on inventory management rather than playing the game proper.

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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 14th February 2020, 08:28

Re: Too many Evo items.

I think the fact that the inventory size is limited means that inventory management is meant to be part of playing the game proper. If we combine and remove items (or use item type roulette etc.) so that all items you want fit in your inventory, then why have a limited inventory at all?

So one option would be to make the inventory unlimited. Personally, I would prefer the other way, make it even more limited. Bring back item weight (or call it bulkiness or something) and give different species different carrying capacities (or just base it on str like it used to be). The fact that a spriggan could carry 52 crystal plate mails feels just wrong.
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Lair Larrikin

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Post Friday, 14th February 2020, 10:06

Re: Too many Evo items.

Two ideas for classes of items, among which the existing effects could be redistributed:
- idol: behaves like a misc item; the player can carry at most one, destroyed on being dropped. Functionally a one-trick, piety-less and wrath-less minor deity. Probably to be found only in timed portals, to reduce backtracking.
- gem: behaves like a misc item; destroyed on using stairs ("removed from its magical field, the gem shatters!")

Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Friday, 14th February 2020, 17:18

Re: Too many Evo items.

Sprucery wrote:I think the fact that the inventory size is limited means that inventory management is meant to be part of playing the game proper.
I think it just means that there are 26 letters on most keyboards.

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Snake Sneak

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Post Friday, 14th February 2020, 19:36

Re: Too many Evo items.

galbolle wrote:idol: Functionally a one-trick, piety-less and wrath-less minor deity.


I'm not sure what this even actually means, but I like the idea. Do you find idols of specific gods in the dungeon and it lets you use their * ability? That would be neat. Maybe you get an extra small bonus if you're carrying an idol of a god you worship. Or do we get randart gods as an item now?

Zot Zealot

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Post Friday, 14th February 2020, 20:12

Re: Too many Evo items.

I think that the number of items should be cut down for other reasons than inventory management: too many items cause a cognitive overload, and takes your focus away from the game.

But that said, I think there is a relatively simple solution to the inventory problem. Similarly as spellbooks does not behave as items anymore, evocables should not behave as items. When you pick one up, it simple changes your amount in a spearate category. You can not ever drop them, just use them, with a seperate menu from the inventory screen. Not available evocables can be grey, you may hide certain types if you do not wish to see them, and you may assign predefined letters to every type similarly to spells.

Of course, the best would be to extend it to other items, like scrolls and potions. If I am not mistaken identification has its own menu anyway, so it does not matter that they are not in one inventory menu.

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Post Friday, 14th February 2020, 22:41

Re: Too many Evo items.

Concerning the miscellaneous items, there is a problem that I think needs addressing. It's the combination of two factors: slow recharging and not being particularly unique.

Slow recharging means that you aren't going to use them very often, because you can't control when they will be available again. Not being particularly unique means that, in a given situation, there generally will be other stuff you can use instead, and so you will use the other stuff (unlike the important potions).

Maybe it's just a mindset problem with me, but that's how I play with them. As a result, I almost never use them.

Enter the crystal ball. On one hand, it's very dangerous to use. On the other hand, it has a use for a specific kind of character, and there is no other item that can cover for it. So it's useless for 99% games, but there is a very small area where it's a real game-changer (a Cheib PC that can survive without MP, but can make good use of them). The crystal ball has no usage limit or cooldown, as far as I can remember.

So I'll make a short list:
  • -- Items that grant allies: Horn of Geryon, Sack of Spiders, Phantom Mirror, Phial of Floods, Lamp of Fire: these compete with the scroll of shadows, and I would only leave three: the mirror, one between the bag and the sack, and one between the other three, because they are just too many, and part of an excessive abundance of ways to obtain allies that affects all of Crawl. If you think about it, the fact that lots of gods grant allies (even to non-casters!) disincentives you from using any of these. And those who really, really want allies have a background and a whole magic school they can choose. Water and Fire could probably just be removed, and the bag too; the Horn is a reward, but I wonder how much use it really gets. Maybe turn Horn, Fire and Water into a set of fixedart armour.
  • -- Direct damage: the Lightning Rod. Since it's just damage, it competes with any other killdudes.
  • -- Move Other: Fan of Gales. It doesn't really have much competition. I would move the lightning rod's 3 charges mechanic to this one, and remove the rod, so that the fan's use is incentivised by reliability.

Concerning wands:
  • I would remove enslavement and polymorph. Paralysis does everything the other two do (I have never used enslavement to gain an ally, only to remove an enemy).
    Ugly creatures could react to any spell thrown at them, instead of just wands of polymorph.
  • As said, digging can be fused with acid.
  • I would keep flame because of how clearly puny it is. It's like how you stop carrying clubs after a while.
  • Scattershot is cool because it's the only wand you want to use in melee range. Clouds is cool because you can use it with vision blocked. Disintegration is cool because it just feels different. Iceblast imho feels a lot like Disintegration, but it is used a lot (by me at least). Random effect also objectively gets use.

This way, wands would go from 11 to 8.

I like the idea of idols that you can't take down the stairs. I think that there could be some fixed skill thresholds, like 14 evo you get 2 uses, and 22 evo you get 3. The only problem is how it would interact with shafts.
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Post Saturday, 15th February 2020, 03:45

Re: Too many Evo items.

Sprucery wrote:I think the fact that the inventory size is limited means that inventory management is meant to be part of playing the game proper. If we combine and remove items (or use item type roulette etc.) so that all items you want fit in your inventory, then why have a limited inventory at all?

It seems to me, indeed, Crawl is going in the direction of a situation where you might as well just be allowed to Ctrl-F and use any item that exists. I don't want to see encumbrance back, but I do want to make some decisions about what to carry.
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Crypt Cleanser

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Post Saturday, 15th February 2020, 04:12

Re: Too many Evo items.

The problems with limited inventory in DCSS are closely tied to its other mechanics. You have a very loose clock and the ability to backtrack, so any item that you drop can just be picked up again later. If you put serious pressure on inventory space, you might reach the point where the player makes more meaningful item decisions for specific encounters/areas, but you also massively increase the amount of backtracking and inventory management. Low inventory space characters already existed in versions with encumbrance - just play a 4 str spriggan or whatever. You spent half the game dropping and picking up items. If you want item choices to be meaningful in the long term, you've gotta cut into backtracking one way or another.
Remove spell hunger.

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Post Saturday, 15th February 2020, 06:27

Re: Too many Evo items.

Hellmonk wrote:If you want item choices to be meaningful in the long term, you've gotta cut into backtracking one way or another.


What if you want item choices to be meaningful in the short term, but don't want it to be meaningful in the long term?
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Post Saturday, 15th February 2020, 12:33

Re: Too many Evo items.

Then you're committed to a game with lots of backtracking and time spent on inventory management.
Remove spell hunger.

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Post Saturday, 15th February 2020, 15:02

Re: Too many Evo items.

sanka wrote:I think that the number of items should be cut down for other reasons than inventory management: too many items cause a cognitive overload, and takes your focus away from the game.


I don't know whether other people feel the same way, but I dislike with the cognitive load induced by having many items I want to carry around and select from, whereas having many items which could potentially exist (like artefacts) increases the depth of the game without increasing the cognitive load.
If we would have a roulette, I would actually enjoy having more potentially existent evocables.

I think it would be interesting to have the occasional game where you're 'forced' to use a particular evocable, for example a game where your only hex wand is enslavement. It might be fun to find out whether it's any good :)
As Shtopit said, in the current situation you end up not using the evocables you're not used to. (Interestingly different people end up using different ones, apparently. I use the rechargeable evocables a lot.)

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Post Saturday, 15th February 2020, 19:01

Re: Too many Evo items.

Hellmonk wrote:The problems with limited inventory in DCSS are closely tied to its other mechanics. You have a very loose clock and the ability to backtrack, so any item that you drop can just be picked up again later.

That's certainly true in the medium term, absent trips to Pan and the like, but when a crisis is happening you can't, and I'll live with a bit of backtracking the rest of the time (given how easy it is interface-wise) in order to have to make choices about what to have with me in a crisis.
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Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Saturday, 15th February 2020, 19:49

Re: Too many Evo items.

The actual issue is that you can always carry all the tactically useful items you have access to at the cost of not carrying things whose direct possession at any given time is mere convenience. So this rousing appeal to the idea of choice denies the basis of the entire conversation. Cool!
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