Trog and Invocations


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Post Sunday, 29th January 2012, 22:50

Trog and Invocations

This is more of a question to anyone that's close to Crawl Development than a suggestion;

Why does Trog not allow training Invocations?

I mean, sure, other gods don't have you raise the skill too, but Trog has the additional penalty of removing the ability to train SPC effectively while you're playing with him. That way, you can't use Guardian Spirit as effectively as you would, which can be found on randart caps and shields, as well as the amulet, if you want to use that.

I guess the answer is most probably: That's the deal with Trog. He's a barbarian god, Invocations is about rituals. That Barbarians don't do any rituals, can be argued a lot but I'm not willing to do that.

If Troglodytes were allowed to train Invocations, would it be too OP when used in conjuction with Guardian Spirit + (+ MP possibly) gear? Not really sure. Guardian Spirit is an often overlooked item because it mostly becomes available through amulets, which people always reserve for rMut in the endgame.

One thing that would be nice is that through training Invocations, you'd be able to use Brothers In arms way more reliably like you do now and with INV getting higher Trog's Hand would provide better regeneration and MR and Brothers In Arms would grant you higher Tier allies progressively. I believe this is a small buff to end-game berserkers, where they start to lose their shine.

But is this a buff to Troglodytes? Maybe, maybe not.

Having to train Invocations would make life harder on some builds like MuBe and others with low apts. It would probably be considered a buff for DSBe and HOBe and DDBe. Having to train an additional skill is always a thing you have to do, though, and is considered a nerf so I don't think it would be a buff in the end.

But feel free to tell me why this hasn't been the case for as long as I remember DC:SS. If it's a flavour reason that you don't wish to change, or if it's balance you are after, I won't say any more. :)
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 00:17

Re: Trog and Invocations

Trog's granted abilities don't make use of invocations, so worshipping her doesn't add invocations to the list of trainable skills. If following her did add invocations to that list, it would misleadingly imply that invocations did something productive with her, which would cause unspoiled players to waste large amounts of xp. More mp for guardian spirit is a very niche benefit, not really worth the risk of misleading newbies.

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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 02:54

Re: Trog and Invocations

Perhaps a bigger problem then is that whether or not raising a skill affects success rate is considered spoiler material. This might be a topic for a different thread, but I don't see why the interface couldn't simply tell the player that information.

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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 03:09

Re: Trog and Invocations

I don't really understand why Trog's abilities don't require Invocations in the first place. What makes a God want invo or not? Nemelex Evo makes sense, and Ash not wanting Invo jives with the whole skill boost/free XP thing. But Trog, though? It could be seen as a god buff (like Ash) in that you can save your XP for more useful skills, but berserkers have only a handful of skills they can train in the first place.

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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 03:15

Re: Trog and Invocations

1. Training Invocations increases maxMP.

2. maxMP can be used for casting.

3. Trog hates casting.

Seriously, that was the main reason to disable Invocations for Trog -- no player should feel tempted to abandon the god in order to make use of the MP accumulated from Inv. (Incidentally, this happened way before Guardian Spirit was added. Of course, it also happened before the skill/learning reform. You know that you can train Inv these days, if you really want to?)

Thematically, we thought it fitting that a god like Trog would not care about the finer points of worship. You kill and provide corpses, end of story.

It also seems good that Trog's powers are strong, but on the imprecise side (this goes for beserk and the brothers).

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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 04:11

Re: Trog and Invocations

That makes sense.

dpeg wrote:You know that you can train Inv these days, if you really want to?


Really? I have no idea how to unlock invocations if your God doesn't ask for them.

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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 04:15

Re: Trog and Invocations

Good point! You cannot, I apologise for the confusion.

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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 04:19

Re: Trog and Invocations

eeviac wrote:I don't really understand why Trog's abilities don't require Invocations in the first place. What makes a God want invo or not? Nemelex Evo makes sense, and Ash not wanting Invo jives with the whole skill boost/free XP thing. But Trog, though? It could be seen as a god buff (like Ash) in that you can save your XP for more useful skills, but berserkers have only a handful of skills they can train in the first place.


Invocations is a double-unlock cost that can be assigned. In addition to unlocking new abilities by gaining piety, you also have to pay an extra surcharge of xp to a skill that has no other use but making these unlocked abilities actually useful. As such, requiring invocations is a disadvantage that allows the deity to have stronger powers. Makhleb is an excellent example; you can easily unlock Greater Servant by Lair, for instance, which would be absurdly overpowered if you could use it whenever you wanted. So Greater Servant has a measure of reliability that depends on your invocations. If you want to be able to run over Rupert with two executioners when he shows up on Lair 5, you're going to have to train invocations up to around the level where you'd have 5th-level spells were you were training a magic skill instead.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 09:15

Re: Trog and Invocations

eeviac wrote:That makes sense.

dpeg wrote:You know that you can train Inv these days, if you really want to?


Really? I have no idea how to unlock invocations if your God doesn't ask for them.


If you find a bunch of Manuals on Invocations, I guess, lol.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 09:23

Re: Trog and Invocations

Not anymore.

Edit: sorry, this is wrong, see further posts.
Last edited by Galefury on Monday, 30th January 2012, 13:31, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 09:57

Re: Trog and Invocations

Galefury wrote:Not anymore.


You can't train skills with a Manual unless you're eligible to highlight them as active? When did that happen? :)
What I mean is, studying a Manual would train a skill regardless to whether you activated the skill or not. I remember studying a manual for a skill I had 0 skill on and without enabling it it got some skill levels.
Last edited by TehDruid on Monday, 30th January 2012, 12:59, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 11:55

Re: Trog and Invocations

Actually I'm not 100% sure this is the case. But I cant test it right now.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 13:23

Re: Trog and Invocations

Manuals can train skill you wouldn't be able to train otherwise. Unless it's a useless skill (permanently useless because of racial restriction). In other words, anybody but demigods can train invocations with a manual.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 17:14

Re: Trog and Invocations

Since Invocations gives bonus MP, I am of the opinion that Demigods should be able to train it at any time, possibly with a +bonus to do so, since they will never be able to otherwise.

Or it can increase gradually without training with a value flatly based on the Demigod's level (plus % to next level).
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 17:39

Re: Trog and Invocations

MP bonus is max(spellcasting/4, invo/6) -- I simply can't imagine a time when training Invo would make sense for a Demigod, even if it were possible. Even if you don't want to cast spells, you could learn one and train only Spellcasting.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 18:15

Re: Trog and Invocations

Demigods not being allowed to train invocations is pretty clear-cut. Even if there's some absurd corner case where it might actually be useful, flavour and clarity and common sense obviously overrule it (likewise Draconians not being allowed to train armour even though they could get a whole 3 extra AC if they trained it to 22!).

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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 18:33

Re: Trog and Invocations

njvack wrote:MP bonus is max(spellcasting/4, invo/6)


Nevermind, then. I thought bonuses from Spellcasting and Invocations added together.
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Post Monday, 30th January 2012, 23:40

Re: Trog and Invocations

First of all I'd like to say thanks for clarifying some stuff I've never wondered about before, guys.

It's a given that us gamers view the game's content in various ways (because it's given to us undefined, which is not a bad thing of course but can lead to some extra confusion when it comes to content fixes/suggestions), I remember the topic that was about Gods and what gender you think they may be as well as what they represent for you.

Here's another thing I've been wondering;

Why does Okawaru require (or lets say allow) training Invocations? His kind of worship is far from the ritualistic type that gods like Ely/Zin etc. require. He and Trog are pretty close. But, berserkers are likely to perform blood-sacrifice shaman-style rituals (you could say, for example, that before berserking, they dye their face in the blood of their enemies or something similar). On the other hand, a warrior-type (most common Okawaru follower) that believes in the legend of an old master knight named Okawaru is more likely to be inspired by his admiration for that person resulting in him gaining the benefits of Heroism and Finesse by their will to perform feats and prove their worth, rather than calling some sort of divine support.

In the end what I'm saying is that every person fantasizes about the Crawl Universe in a "distorted" way. The above is how I think of Berserkers and Okawaru followers, for example. :lol:

I personally believe that the only real Invocations-based ability is Recite (and Sanctuary, I guess, since its effect happens over turns). Everything else takes just one turn to perform. Are rituals supposed to last the same time as it takes for an untrained PC in UC to perform a punch? I know not all can be realistic in a game, but when it comes to fine points as flavour-based god differentiations, it does matter whether everything is considered divine or just a personal whim of the character (going apeshit or getting inspired in the above examples).
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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 00:37

Re: Trog and Invocations

minmay wrote:Only somewhat related, but I dislike how Kikubaaqudgha's and Nemelex' invocations aren't based off the actual invocations skill. Instead they're based off skills that you'd already be training a lot anyway, which seems like a waste. What's the point of having an invocations skill if it's not even used for half the game's invocations?


Clearly, Kiku and Nemelex can't afford the extra xp cost of training invocations on top of everything else, what with being deities of marginal utility and all. Paying the extra fee is for the likes of Chei and Fedhas, and other overused power gods.

There's something not quite right here, isn't there?
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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 00:57

Re: Trog and Invocations

KoboldLord wrote:
minmay wrote:Only somewhat related, but I dislike how Kikubaaqudgha's and Nemelex' invocations aren't based off the actual invocations skill. Instead they're based off skills that you'd already be training a lot anyway, which seems like a waste. What's the point of having an invocations skill if it's not even used for half the game's invocations?


Clearly, Kiku and Nemelex can't afford the extra xp cost of training invocations on top of everything else, what with being deities of marginal utility and all. Paying the extra fee is for the likes of Chei and Fedhas, and other overused power gods.

There's something not quite right here, isn't there?


Kiku is bound to Necromancy. So I guess it's the god's "theme" to require one to level their necromancy skill to reap the benefits (protection from miscast of death magic, corpse delivery) and invocable torment is an ability that deals % damage so I guess what would be the purpose of requiring INV for this god? Nothing. Unless corpse delivery was bound to INV and torment did a higher % of HP damage that scaled with INV but that's OP I guess.

Same goes for Ashenzari. Has 2 skills only, Scrying (which wouldn't really benefit from higher INV skill unless you really tried to make INV matter for it, like making the region of scrying larger or scrying the entire level at high INV levels for a hefty amount of piety) and the transfer knowledge thing, that again, is not anything that could justify increasing INV for (faster transfer? higher amounts of exp moved at less time? That would just be a convenience, and a pretty lame one at that).

I agree with Minmay's above post. All in all, I think it would be safe to say that INV can be removed and gods either bound to character skills relevant to their trade (Sif Muna benefiting from SPC, Oka from FGT, Nemelex from Evocations (as things stand for him/her atm), etc) or you could leave gods with set success rates for their skills that depend on piety level, like BiA does for Trog.
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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 02:36

Re: Trog and Invocations

Just removing invocations skill entirely has been brought up in the past and probably isn't a terrible idea, yeah.

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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 07:09

Re: Trog and Invocations

Removing invocations sounds good to me, but I don't know how you'd balance some of the gods.

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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 10:01

Re: Trog and Invocations

Success rate or other stuff can be tied to XL if a skill is too powerful early on (Makhleb's greater demons come to mind). The most simple way to do this would be replacing all instances of Invocations with XL. Less interesting, sure. A buff, sure. But in some cases it could work well. In some other cases piety or other costs can be raised (or even depend on XL).

Also, balancing does not mean "all gods need to have the same power as before the change". It doesn't even mean "all gods need to be equally useful on average". It means "no gamebreaking or useless gods". And that is really not that hard to achieve.

Some gods like Ely and Zin would be hard to make work if Invo was removed (Invo = XL could work, but I'm not sure), but for most gods it's really not a major problem.

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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 13:11

Re: Trog and Invocations

^
|


This
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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 15:45

Re: Trog and Invocations

Galefury wrote:Success rate or other stuff can be tied to XL if a skill is too powerful early on (Makhleb's greater demons come to mind). The most simple way to do this would be replacing all instances of Invocations with XL. Less interesting, sure. A buff, sure. But in some cases it could work well. In some other cases piety or other costs can be raised (or even depend on XL).


It doesn't work too well if you've just swapped your god at XL 26.
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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 15:58

Re: Trog and Invocations

Why not? You're going to fight strong monsters at XL 26, so having powerful invocations is okay. Getting invocations skill for free would be a buff, yes, and gods that are already strong would need some nerf to compensate or a different solution. But I don't see why this wouldn't work for Fedhas for example.
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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 16:26

Re: Trog and Invocations

Galefury wrote:Why not? You're going to fight strong monsters at XL 26, so having powerful invocations is okay. Getting invocations skill for free would be a buff, yes, and gods that are already strong would need some nerf to compensate or a different solution. But I don't see why this wouldn't work for Fedhas for example.


I guess; I didn't consider that the invocations skill itself doesn't "reset" between god swaps.
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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 16:41

Re: Trog and Invocations

Asking players to invest xp into a dedicated skill for best god results is fine, in my opinion. Ideally, this allows for some god variety (which gods need what levels of investments) and player choices (how far to skill, and when).

When I briefly suggested scrapping Invocations as a global skill, I was concerned with something else: you learn to invoke god A, but then you turn to god B and can do the same. This feels not quite right. Nothing ever happened because individual Inv scores (one per god) would make god switching less attractive (so should only come after wrath reform, if at all) and few developers seemed to care. I was not alone in the assessment that global Invocations is a bit strange, though.

That said, it it will be obvious that I think replacing Inv by XL is a bad idea. Skill investment is a lot more interesting than automatic growth like this.

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Post Tuesday, 31st January 2012, 17:12

Re: Trog and Invocations

I'd rather the success and strength be based on peity level and adjust the cost, accumulation, and decay of the piety indivitually to the gods and abilities.

I'm all for removing the invocation skill, you would have to adjust the mana cost of the abilities though because you would again be hurting non spellcasters because their skills wouldn't increase their mana pool.

Using Makhelb for example. If you want to have a god of slaughter you make fast accumulation, fast decay, and low cost abilities that pushes the character deeper without resting. If you spend 2000 turns digging around in your stash then you lose 1 maybe 1.5 stars of peity, but if you just cleared out orc 4, even using your summons, you should be at full peity. If you want to control low level characters using high level summons you can change the cost to something like a temporary max hp hit that wont come back as long as the summon is active. You are using that portion of your life force to control the summon. Makes it very risky to use when low level, but higher level characters with higher hp pools wont have a problem with it.

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Post Saturday, 4th February 2012, 17:44

Re: Trog and Invocations

TehDruid wrote:First of all I'd like to say thanks for clarifying some stuff I've never wondered about before, guys.

It's a given that us gamers view the game's content in various ways (because it's given to us undefined, which is not a bad thing of course but can lead to some extra confusion when it comes to content fixes/suggestions), I remember the topic that was about Gods and what gender you think they may be as well as what they represent for you.

Here's another thing I've been wondering;

Why does Okawaru require (or lets say allow) training Invocations? His kind of worship is far from the ritualistic type that gods like Ely/Zin etc. require. He and Trog are pretty close. But, berserkers are likely to perform blood-sacrifice shaman-style rituals (you could say, for example, that before berserking, they dye their face in the blood of their enemies or something similar). On the other hand, a warrior-type (most common Okawaru follower) that believes in the legend of an old master knight named Okawaru is more likely to be inspired by his admiration for that person resulting in him gaining the benefits of Heroism and Finesse by their will to perform feats and prove their worth, rather than calling some sort of divine support.


There's no problem with Okawaru requiring Invocations because perhaps Okawaru is insulted and won't help if you can't vocalize or perform his ritual for a given skill properly. You are supposed to be an extremely devout practitioner of Okawaru's teachings, he isn't just a device for you to take advantage of as you galavant(sp?) through the dungeon.

There Is no damn reason to remove Invocations. I don't get why nearly everyone (except for the occasional dev.) thinks it would be such a great idea to dumb down every strategic, character development choice in the game into, "I'm playing a melee character. I put all my points into weapon skill lol afk tabbing the dungeon now", etc for other builds.

Right now you can choose to play a character that forgoes Godly powers in order to hone his Combat Skills or you can choose to invest in your Godly powers and find yourself needing to use them more frequently.. Why would anyone want to play a game with less variety by removing that type of choice?

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