Proposal: Terrain


Although the central place for design discussion is ##crawl-dev on freenode, some may find it helpful to discuss requests and suggestions here first.

User avatar

Slime Squisher

Posts: 332

Joined: Friday, 4th February 2011, 18:04

Location: The South, US

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 14:36

Proposal: Terrain

This idea had been growing from several thoughts: Melee should get a boost; T&D should become usable skill, instead of just being security; and Corridors are boring.

  • Basic Terrain: you stand on a square, and you (or a monster) get a bonus (or malus). HP, MP, AC, EV, SH all seem like good starting bonuses. Uses T&D.
  • Magical Terrain: 1. Magical resistance, like MR or rMut or rP, or 2. Use of a spell or spell set, passively or actively. Uses T&D and Evoc.
  • Consecrated Terrain: Site has been consecrated to a God, and you may use some of that god's abilities. For example, a site for Chei might give {Ponderous, +5 Stats or Distort Time}. Uses T&D and Evoc. Possibly a chance of wrath or temporary conducts. Possibly great chance of wrath if you worship another God.
  • Combinations: Basic + Magical or Basic + Consecrated, not Magical + Consecrated.

The degree of the bonus should be dependent on your T&D (and Evocations). Magical and Consecrated sites should have a Long Timer and a Short Timer, just like vaults have, as well as a limited number of "charges" for active abilities.

Ideally, this should benefit melee characters (since spell-casters should have enough free xp for high Evocations and T&D except very late game), or, at least, get them out of the corridors, and make Evocations and T&D more useful skills.
Human kind cannot bear very much reality.
TSE

Spider Stomper

Posts: 243

Joined: Sunday, 28th August 2011, 14:04

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 15:15

Re: Proposal: Terrain

dolphin, I like your idea a lot. Finding one of this squares it's like finding a magical wand that you can only use in a certain place, it uses T&D instead of evocations, and most importantly, those squares are generated only in open areas.

The main problem I see is that players would try to lure monsters that are far away, towards those special squares. This can be avoided easily: The effect of magical terrain can only be used for a small amount of turns after you have discovered the square. After that amount of time has passed, the magical forces in that square are dissipated, and the square becomes a normal one.

Lair Larrikin

Posts: 27

Joined: Saturday, 1st October 2011, 19:13

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 16:06

Re: Proposal: Terrain

Wouldn't Consecrated Ground run afoul of the 'no double gods' rule on the list of things that won't be implemented?

Dungeon Master

Posts: 3618

Joined: Thursday, 23rd December 2010, 12:43

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 16:36

Re: Proposal: Terrain

100 Rogues has something like this (single squares which boost one aspect). It does lead to luring which is not so bad for 100 Rogues because the levels are very small and the food clock is relentless.

If you want to use this in Crawl, it certainly needs more thought.
User avatar

Vestibule Violator

Posts: 1593

Joined: Thursday, 19th May 2011, 16:38

Location: Penza, Russia

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 16:47

Re: Proposal: Terrain

Erm... What about "beneficial traps" that damage or affect something around you, but not the square you are standing on?
If you find any mistakes or typos in my post, feel free to PM me about it. Thanks in advance!

The Verse flows throughout Aquaria...
Through each ripple and wave...
Through every living being...
The Verse binds us all as one.

Ziggurat Zagger

Posts: 2996

Joined: Tuesday, 28th June 2011, 20:41

Location: Berlin

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 17:01

Re: Proposal: Terrain

MyOtheHedgeFox wrote:Erm... What about "beneficial traps" that damage or affect something around you, but not the square you are standing on?


This is a bad idea because it will result in leading monsters over them or close to them (even across half the level) for optimal play.
User avatar

Ziggurat Zagger

Posts: 5832

Joined: Thursday, 10th February 2011, 18:30

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 17:04

Re: Proposal: Terrain

There is a page in the dev wiki for this:

right here
"Be aware that a lot of people on this forum, such as mageykun and XuaXua, have a habit of making things up." - minmay a.k.a. duvessa
Did I make a lame complaint? Check for Bingo!
Totally gracious CSDC Season 2 Division 4 Champeen!
User avatar

Dungeon Master

Posts: 332

Joined: Friday, 15th July 2011, 22:43

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 19:15

Re: Proposal: Terrain

Terrain that confers advantage/disadvantage is really cool but I'm also concerned about the scummability of it. In terms of magical or consecrated terrain, what if it ran out over time? Another possibility is the terrain shifting to another part of the level after a number of turns (maybe 20, 50, 100? I'm not sure what would be too long, or what would be too short?)

One thing to keep in mind is that deep water/lava are existing abusable terrain features, but are made less attractive because of item/corpse destruction (and less XP? I can't remember offhand).

Terrain consecrated to Yred or Kiku could raise up monsters as hostile undead occasionally, when killed in it, perhaps? Maybe having separate "consecrated terrains" for each god would be a ton, but what if it were simply "evil terrain" and "holy terrain"?
User avatar

Vaults Vanquisher

Posts: 451

Joined: Sunday, 11th September 2011, 00:07

Post Thursday, 22nd December 2011, 19:43

Re: Proposal: Terrain

There is so much wrong with this - scummable, needlessly complicated, assumes melee, T&D and evocations are worse than they actually are, etc.
Your warning level: [CLASSIFIED]
User avatar

Slime Squisher

Posts: 332

Joined: Friday, 4th February 2011, 18:04

Location: The South, US

Post Friday, 23rd December 2011, 13:05

Re: Proposal: Terrain

minmay wrote:am i the only person in the world who uses "melee character" to mean "character which melees"


Blarg. Thanked when I meant to quote.

Anyway, this idea of terrain was meant to address the fact that ranged combat is better in nearly all circumstances because it does more damage (damage the whole length of approach, and length of fleeing), and it allows you more escape options, since you can stay near LOS limit and still kill things, while melee must either open themselves up to a full LOS worth of attacks or stay in corridors since they have to go up to a monster to kill it. AC/EV and SH may be good, but it isn't as valuable as not getting hit by things that can't see you. If there are some benefits to staying out in the open, then you may have a new choice.

TimP wrote:Wouldn't Consecrated Ground run afoul of the 'no double gods' rule on the list of things that won't be implemented?


My thought was that you would be technically following the god, but rather the area is filled with a little bit of the god's power. However, if you don't follow this god, there should be a moderate chance of short-term Wrath. Also, if you already have another god, then you should lose large amounts of piety for using that holy site (Unless both the site and your god are TSO, Ely, or Zin). Atheists would be benefited in this case.

dpeg wrote:100 Rogues has something like this (single squares which boost one aspect). It does lead to luring which is not so bad for 100 Rogues because the levels are very small and the food clock is relentless.

If you want to use this in Crawl, it certainly needs more thought.


I'll try to work out problems as other people point them out, since usually other people can see problems with your idea that you yourself can't.

Would it be possible to make the generation of terrain conditional on 1. a localised pack of monsters nearby; and 2. an open area? If so, then simply having the two, possibly three timers in addition to these conditions should prevent luring. The shortest timer should be very short, would start when you stepped onto the terrain, and would end be marked by, "This place is falling to pieces," and accompanied by a gradual decrease in benefits. The middle timer would start when you saw the terrain and the long timer should be about the length of the long vault timer.

I think luring can be prevented by instilling a "Use it NOW or lose it" mindset.

XuaXua wrote:There is a page in the dev wiki for this:

right here


If enough problems with the idea are worked out here, I'll move it. If the idea has too many problems, then I won't clutter up the wiki, since cleaning individual pages can be a pain, as you have pointed out elsewhere.

ebarrett wrote:There is so much wrong with this - scummable, needlessly complicated, assumes melee, T&D and evocations are worse than they actually are, etc.


Could you explain how it should be simpler then? I'm all for conciseness and removing unnecessary bits.

The Terrain idea probably does assume the weakness of melee too much.

But T&D and Evocations? As I see it, T&D is just security. It does nothing constructive or fun. It presents me with no new choices. It only keeps me from experiencing totally random problems, and unlike monsters, these traps aren't fun problems to solve.

Evocations is primarily limited to wands, rods, and occasional rings and artefacts. Misc. Items aren't yet good enough to use widely, and cards are still primarily for Nemelexites only, since decks don't generate often enough elsewhere. However getting enough useful rods to rely on in a 3-rune game isn't something you can count on, and rightly so, since Evocations is at least partly defined by its greater randomness than spellcasting. If Evocations had something else that it affected, you might consider pumping Evocations even when you weren't a Troglodyte or Nemelexite.
Human kind cannot bear very much reality.
TSE
User avatar

Crypt Cleanser

Posts: 644

Joined: Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 09:36

Location: <---

Post Friday, 23rd December 2011, 13:59

Re: Proposal: Terrain

dolphin wrote:
minmay wrote:a
Anyway, this idea of terrain was meant to address the fact that ranged combat is better in nearly all circumstances because it does more damage (damage the whole length of approach, and length of fleeing), and it allows you more escape options, since you can stay near LOS limit and still kill things, while melee must either open themselves up to a full LOS worth of attacks or stay in corridors since they have to go up to a monster to kill it. AC/EV and SH may be good, but it isn't as valuable as not getting hit by things that can't see you. If there are some benefits to staying out in the open, then you may have a new choice.



Maybe off-topic, but what if we give a to-hit penalty to ranged accordingly to the distance? And for launcher, even a to-dam penalty.
Not only it's "real" (target lot bigger when near), but it could also incite ranged to get closer than always at the edge of LOS.

For the terrain bonus, actually before the said bonus, which skill, time/use limit... you should choose how to represent it. In tile, a tile not distinct enough might appear just like a vault without signification. In ASCII, I don't think colorshift if enough. Plus, imagine that you turn a corner :
o=orc .=floor @=player #=wall *=special floor
  Code:
####
#.o*
#@##
#.##

How do you know if the orc is on the special floor? If there it is a second orc, how do you know there it is a special floor at all?
If an *easy* enemy can be superpower full in certain condition, it's the minimum to show easily these conditions.

Spider Stomper

Posts: 243

Joined: Sunday, 28th August 2011, 14:04

Post Friday, 23rd December 2011, 14:15

Re: Proposal: Terrain

I think some halo effects like the ones of the Orb of Zot or Mennas could be good.
User avatar

Ziggurat Zagger

Posts: 5832

Joined: Thursday, 10th February 2011, 18:30

Post Friday, 23rd December 2011, 15:30

Re: Proposal: Terrain

dolphin wrote:
XuaXua wrote:There is a page in the dev wiki for this:

right here


If enough problems with the idea are worked out here, I'll move it. If the idea has too many problems, then I won't clutter up the wiki, since cleaning individual pages can be a pain, as you have pointed out elsewhere.


Cleaning individual pages can be a pain if they require cleaning.

I find it easier to work out ideas on the wiki if the author makes things clear and organizes from the start, or cleans a page before adding to it.

Clearing that terrain page is not that painful.

Clearing the Gods Proposal page with a thousand proposals on it, is.
"Be aware that a lot of people on this forum, such as mageykun and XuaXua, have a habit of making things up." - minmay a.k.a. duvessa
Did I make a lame complaint? Check for Bingo!
Totally gracious CSDC Season 2 Division 4 Champeen!

Lair Larrikin

Posts: 16

Joined: Monday, 27th December 2010, 23:22

Post Wednesday, 4th January 2012, 01:16

Re: Proposal: Terrain

To solve the scumming problem, you could have special terrain only appear in places like the Abyss or portal vaults.

I played a MfIE recently and fast swimming added a lot to my enjoyment of that game and increased my tactical choices.

Luring already exists in the game already. We do things like luring packs into corridors and stairdancing.

Honestly, though, I think we really just need more interesting traps. Silence traps, slow traps, etc. If we add more traps, we can use thematic traps (like a rot trap in the Crypt for example). That way we can get a lot of the flavor of this idea, without as many of the problematic implications.

Return to Game Design Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 18 guests

Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.
Designed by ST Software for PTF.