Monsters picking up items


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Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 02:55

Monsters picking up items

Recently, monsters were prohibited from picking up items.
Whilst in general this seems to reduce mildly tedious stashing behaviour, I feel there's an (albeit small) loss in tactical strategy. For example, when the player is in a hallway fighting gnolls, as happens frequently, if any items that would make the gnolls considerably stronger (such as halberds, nets, or wands), the player is faced with a choice: let the gnoll pick up the item, significantly buffing it, pick up the item themselves, move such that it's no longer an issue, or annihilate all the gnolls with a Fire Storm. Currently, this choice is gone, and gnolls and similar monsters are considerably nerfed. Unfortunately, letting the player pick up an item falls directly into tedious stashing.
  Code:
##g#
...#
##[# <- halberd
 #@#

So, I propose having a 20-turn or so window where monsters may pick up the item, but the player cannot. This would re-add an element of tactics while still cutting down on player tedium. Flavor-wise, this doesn't make much less sense than straight-up disallowing it; maybe monsters don't like picking up items covered in floor bugs or something.

Spider Stomper

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 03:34

Re: Monsters picking up items

godzilla wrote:Flavor-wise, this doesn't make much less sense than straight-up disallowing it

In my humble personal opinion, this is absolutely and totally false.

Also, the proposal is not very clear:
- 20 turns after the player sees the item, after the monster sees it, or both?
- What happens after 20 turns? Does the monster lose the ability to pick up the item, do you gain the ability to pick up the item, or both?

Also, you lament the loss of the option of picking up the item, yet your proposal seems to take it away as well?

Finally,
the player is faced with a choice: let the gnoll pick up the item, significantly buffing it, pick up the item themselves, move such that it's no longer an issue, or annihilate all the gnolls with a Fire Storm
In other words, your choice was between an annoyance, another annoyance, and killing the monster before it could hit you, which was the obvious thing to do anyway. This choice is, again in my humble personal opinion, not worth keeping in the first place.

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Tartarus Sorceror

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 04:18

Re: Monsters picking up items

I'm relatively sure that third choice was a joke option

Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 04:23

Re: Monsters picking up items

I guess this did happen, but only vanishingly rarely. Your proposed solution sounds really annoying and I don't think it's worth adding an unintuitive new system just to re-create a tactical situation that came up maybe once every 10 games.

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Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 04:30

Re: Monsters picking up items

ElectricAlbatross wrote:Also, the proposal is not very clear:
- 20 turns after the player sees the item, after the monster sees it, or both?
- What happens after 20 turns? Does the monster lose the ability to pick up the item, do you gain the ability to pick up the item, or both?

Also, you lament the loss of the option of picking up the item, yet your proposal seems to take it away as well?

Sorry I wasn't very clear in the OP. I meant that after either the player sees an item, or a monster drops it, there is a short window in which the player may not pick up the item, but monsters may. After this, monsters may not pick up the item, but the player may.
I don't lament the loss of the option of picking it up; I don't like having to throw distortion weapons in lava/deep water/a corner either. What I want is for monsters to have a limited ability to pick up items for tactical purposes, while still removing the annoying strategic element.

ElectricAlbatross wrote:Finally,
the player is faced with a choice: let the gnoll pick up the item, significantly buffing it, pick up the item themselves, move such that it's no longer an issue, or annihilate all the gnolls with a Fire Storm
In other words, your choice was between an annoyance, another annoyance, and killing the monster before it could hit you, which was the obvious thing to do anyway. This choice is, again in my humble personal opinion, not worth keeping in the first place.

First off, yes, that third option was a joke.
Secondly, it's monsters becoming more threatening is not an "annoyance"-- there are many, many ways you can keep monsters from picking up items (most notably killing the monster :lol: ), and having a chance and motivation to use them against specific enemies, in my opinion, would enrichen the game while still keeping out the tedium.

Spider Stomper

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 04:55

Re: Monsters picking up items

godzilla wrote:First off, yes, that third option was a joke.

Ah, I took it to mean using ranged attacks in general. Apologies

Vaults Vanquisher

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 04:57

Re: Monsters picking up items

Having to wait like a dozen turns before picking up every single item you find is clearly going to be annoying, though. I don't think your proposal is even worth considering unless you cut that bit out.

Tartarus Sorceror

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 10:44

Re: Monsters picking up items

Changing "Monsters cannot pick up items that the player has seen" to "Monsters cannot pick up items that the player has seen with no monsters in sight" or "Monsters cannot pick up items that the player has seen, unless the monster saw it drop" could preserve this situation.

I know I've fought a line of orcs where the front one had a morningstar and the ones behind had clubs. Each one would pick up the morningstar as it advanced. Walking away is the solution there. When the weapon is between you and the enemy, things are a little different.

Abyss Ambulator

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 13:58

Re: Monsters picking up items

I don't understand what the 'players cannot pick up the item for 20 turns' accomplishes. It's not tedious to pick up a weapon in the middle of battle, it's dangerous.
Aside from that, allowing monsters a brief time to pick up weapons would bring back the tactical considerations, while still preventing most of the brainless tedium, as once the battle is over there's no need to go stash or destroy these weapons.

Abyss Ambulator

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 14:00

Re: Monsters picking up items

Just make it so they can only pick up vanilla weapons of a better type than they already have, or an unknown glowing/runed weapon.
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 14:05

Re: Monsters picking up items

TeshiAlair wrote:Just make it so they can only pick up vanilla weapons of a better type than they already have, or an unknown glowing/runed weapon.

So you're going to revert one of the most important parts of the change and encourage picking up every single weapon in the game again?

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Slime Squisher

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 16:39

Re: Monsters picking up items

21.<mikee_> so if you go downstairs and you see a wand between you and an imp you might want to go back upstairs and then back downstairs

Monsters grabbing items is problematic in a LOT of ways. You will have a very hard time finding a way to preserve the tactical depth without causing issues.
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Barkeep

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 16:48

Re: Monsters picking up items

If monsters can pick up items again, it means the proper response is to lure monsters who have dangerous gear away from other monsters and kill them somewhere safe. As this is already the proper response to so many situations in Crawl, I don't think it would add much to bring this one back.

Don't fight gnoll packs in hallways until you can steamroll them, glowing halberds and all.
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Halls Hopper

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 17:55

Re: Monsters picking up items

Leafsnail wrote:Having to wait like a dozen turns before picking up every single item you find is clearly going to be annoying, though. I don't think your proposal is even worth considering unless you cut that bit out.

jejorda2 wrote:Changing "Monsters cannot pick up items that the player has seen" to "Monsters cannot pick up items that the player has seen with no monsters in sight" or "Monsters cannot pick up items that the player has seen, unless the monster saw it drop" could preserve this situation.

Sorry I missed your first post, Leafsnail-- looks like I got ninja'd and didn't notice. :oops:
Anyway, "Monsters cannot pick up items that the player has seen, unless the monster saw it drop" seems like a better solution to me now that I've thought about it a bit. As damiac said, dissallowing player pickup wouldn't really remove any tedium.

njvack wrote:If monsters can pick up items again, it means the proper response is to lure monsters who have dangerous gear away from other monsters and kill them somewhere safe. As this is already the proper response to so many situations in Crawl, I don't think it would add much to bring this one back.

Don't fight gnoll packs in hallways until you can steamroll them, glowing halberds and all.

The real point here is that it's harder to lure away monsters in the early game (where this would really matter) than in other places, and fighting multiple monsters at once is still a very bad idea. But, as you point out, and I said in the OP, this is a very minor issue, and it might not be worth the still minor mechanics necessary to ressurect it.
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Shoals Surfer

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 19:05

Re: Monsters picking up items

godzilla wrote:The real point here is that it's harder to lure away monsters in the early game (where this would really matter) than in other places

You do realize that the early dungeon usually has plenty of stones to throw at things, right?
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Ziggurat Zagger

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Post Tuesday, 22nd July 2014, 20:04

Re: Monsters picking up items

nilsbloodaxe wrote:
godzilla wrote:The real point here is that it's harder to lure away monsters in the early game (where this would really matter) than in other places

You do realize that the early dungeon usually has plenty of stones to throw at things, right?


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