dumb cards idea #500


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

Ziggurat Zagger

Posts: 8690

Joined: Sunday, 5th May 2013, 08:25

Post Monday, 10th December 2018, 22:56

dumb cards idea #500

Thanks to ebering beating Nemelex into something playable, it is now time to beat the cards. The biggest goal here is to make the cards simpler. Many of the current cards are very, very complicated, too complicated to reasonably learn without spoilers.

First, cards lose their discrete tiers. No longer do they have 3 different versions, just 1 version that scales with power. I would also like to simplify card power; the formulas in the cards below are for a card power of Invo*1100/3 + 100. Thus, minimum power is 100 and maximum power is 10000. (I do not think that card power should be influenced by piety as it currently is, or randomized.) It should be easy to map the formulas onto other ranges.
The original card power formula gives a minimum of 0 and maximum of 928.

All division in formulas here should be done in actual code with div_rand_round() instead of /, of course. These formulas may need balance adjustments as well, but there is one thing I am adamant about: they should not have breakpoints if it can possibly be avoided.

I never expected to say this, but I'm actually adding more cards that I'm removing here.

Deck of Destruction
- Currently, zaps from cards have between 0 and 154 power. I propose to change this to 2 through 200 power. It is fine for 27 Invo to let you do limited 200 power zaps; consider that 27 in a spell skill lets you cast a level 9 spell.
- Pain card is gone.

Degeneration
For each hostile monster in LOS, do an MR check against them with a pre-stepdown enchantment power of [Card power]/20 (similar power to Agony at [Card power]/50 spell power). If the check succeeds, polymorph them with PPT_LESS and halve their HP. This incentivizes you to kill them instead of simply running away from the monsters that got slowed by malmutation.
Against unpolymorphable monsters, or if the MR check fails, simply do nothing. Yes sometimes you draw it against a gargoyle and are sad, that's okay, sometimes you draw Vitriol against an acid blob or Pain against a lich (except not anymore because I removed Pain)!
Compared to old card:
- Checks MR instead of HD.
- Halves the HP of monsters that get polymorphed instead of malmutating them.
- Does not daze unpolymorphable monsters.
- Actually uses card power, instead of just using tier.

the Orb
cast_iood_burst with a power of 15+[Card power]/54 and no target. This is 3 to 7 orbs, each of which does 9d1 full-range damage at minimum power and 9d22 full-range damage at maximum power. However, most of these orbs will hit nothing, and even those that do will probably not reach full range.
The added constant is necessary because power below 14 results in orbs that do no damage at all if they hit too soon; power below 4 results in orbs that do no damage even at full range.
Compared to old card:
- No targeting needed!
- Always does a burst of multiple orbs, but doesn't let you target them. This is weaker than the old tier 1 effect, intentionally.
- Full-range orb damage goes from 9d0-9d19 to 9d1-9d22. Yes, this is a pretty small change; that's because IOOD itself has a stepdown in it.

the Storm
wind_blast() with a power of 28+[Card power]/50, then pick random2(12) random squares that are between 4 and [LOS radius] squares distant from the player, plus another such random square that is in LOS and not a wall (if it is available).
On each of the picked squares that is in LOS and is not a wall, create an Orb of Electricity explosion there with [Card power]/50 spell power. So you get 1 explosion if all the completely random squares were in walls/out of LOS, and 12 explosions if there are no walls around.
If your LOS is so small that there are no eligible squares (nightstalker 3 + Darkness or Robe of Night) then you get no explosions and a flavour message like "The air crackles with electricity for a moment."

The wind blast moves adjacent monsters away to increase the chance that the explosions hit them, and the explosions promote being in the open. The minimum distance guarantees that the explosions don't hit the player. The explosion damage is 1d14 at minimum power and 1d173 at maximum power.

Compared to old card:
- Wind blast power is 28-228 instead of 100 at tier 0 and 200 at other tiers.
- Creates orb of electricity explosions instead of clouds, but see Dragonbreath card below.
- No summoned air elemental.

Vitriol
Corrode all hostile monsters in LOS (instead of a 50% chance for each one) and fire ZAP_CORROSIVE_BOLT with a power of [Card power]/50. This is 4d3 damage at minimum power and nearly 4d33 damage at maximum power.
Compared to old card:
- Doesn't use ZAP_BREATHE_ACID at tier 0.
- Max corrosive bolt damage is 4d33 instead of 4d26.
- Corrodes monsters every time instead of only having a 50% chance.

Wild Magic
Cause a Conj/Fire/Ice/Earth/Air/Pois miscast effect on all hostile monsters in LOS with a power of 30+[Card power]/200 and a fail of 1. This provides tier 0/1/2 miscasts at minimum power, and a slightly under 80% chance of a tier 3 miscast at maximum power. For each affected monster you gain random2(5) MP.
Compared to old card:
- Does not check HD.
- More likely to give lower tier miscast effects.
- Less bizarre scaling due to holding fail at 1 instead of using random2(power).

Dragonbreath (new card)
Create a blast of clouds like the monster versions of SPELL_POISONOUS_CLOUD or SPELL_FREEZING_CLOUD, but without the impact damage, and without creating a cloud under the player. Choose the cloud type as if it was Cloud Cone cast with [Card power]/100 power. Give each cloud a duration of 5 + random2avg(12+[Card power]/133, 3), again matching Cloud Cone's duration formula.
The claim to being different from Cloud Cone here is that the shape of the clouds is very different; it's effective against far away monsters and in enclosed spaces much more than Cloud Cone is.

the Leech (new card)
Smite target a monster and hit it with vampiric_drain at [Card power]/25 power, except this version of it deals full damage regardless of your current HP. This is so you can use it to snipe a boggart or something without having to damage yourself first.
Being ranged should make it different enough from regular Vampiric Draining, and induce nostalgia for a certain bug.
For reference, the damage is 3+random2avg(9, 2)+random2(pow) / 7, without random rounding, so at max card power (400 pow) it would be about 36 damage on average.

Deck of Summoning
- I think it's best to just get rid of hostile card summons. If you drew your last summoning cards early on and get a hostile summon you might die, but most of the time the hostile summons are just annoyances that get eaten by the rest of the summons.
- Independent of that, though, some of these need to be nerfed a bit.
- I think that all of these should have a summon duration of 3, except for Illusion since duration is the only thing it can really scale with power.

the Elements
Summons 1+random2([Card power]+1)/2500 friendly air elementals, earth elementals, fire elementals, or water elementals. You only get one type of elemental per card; it summons 5 air elementals, not 1 air and 2 fire and 2 earth elementals.
Compared to old card:
- Summons 4 different monsters instead of 12 with tier dependence (raiju, wind drake, shock serpent, basilisk, catoblepas, iron golem, fire vortex, molten gargoyle, fire dragon, ice beast, polar bear, ice dragon).
- Duration is always 3.
- Summons 1 to 5 monsters instead of always summoning 3.

the Pentagram
Take x = 5-random2avg([Card power]+1,2)/1000. If x > 0, summon a random friendly demon of that tier. If x <= 0, summon a friendly Pan lord.
Compared to old card:
- Summons one monster instead of two, and it's always friendly.
- Can summon 5s and 1s.
- Duration is always 3.
- You need a lot more Invocations to get good monsters from it.

the Dance
Summon a friendly, unbranded dancing weapon with an enchantment of [Card power]/400. Give it a subtype of great sword, battleaxe, glaive, or great mace, all with equal chances. Initialize it with a power of [Card power]/100.
Getting fancy with brands and subtypes and randarts risks making the card impossible to predict without spoilers. Dancing weapon power and enchantment is enough to tune the card's power level - dancing weapon power alone would be enough if it weren't capped at 100.
Compared to old card:
- The weapon's base type is not tier dependent.
- The weapon's enchantment depends on power instead of tier.
- The dancing weapon power does not cap out until card power itself does.
- Duration is always 3.

Foxfire
Summon 1+random2([Card power]+1)/1000 friendly killer bees.
Compared to old card:
- Summons 1 to 1-10 monsters scaling with power, instead of 2-4 to 8-10 scaling with tier.
- Only summons killer bees, instead of summoning insubstantial wisps, wyverns, killer bees, vampire mosquitoes, and hornets depending on tier.
- Duration is still 3.

the Rangers
Summon two friendly monsters. For each one, if two [Card power] in 15000 chances succeed, it is a deep elf master archer; if only one of those chances succeeded, it is a centaur warrior; if neither succeeded, it is a centaur.
Compared to old card:
- Always summons two monsters instead of summoning 2 or 3 with equal chances.
- Does not summon yaktaurs, fauns, yaktaur captains, naga sharpshooters, satyrs, or merfolk javelineers.
- Uses power to decide monster type instead of tier.
- Duration is always 3, instead of starting at 5 and decreasing with tier (what the hell?)

the Illusion
Summon a friendly illusion of yourself with a summon duration of 1+random2([Card power]+1)/5000.
Compared to old card:
- Duration is 1-3 based on power instead of 2+random2(tier). This card is kind of impossible to tune, hopefully a duration of 1 at low power is enough...

the Garden (new card)
Summons 4+random2([Card power]+1)/500 friendly monsters. Each monster is an oklob plant with a [Card power] in 40000 chance, otherwise it is a briar patch. Briar patches are nice because you and the oklobs can shoot through them, and monsters that attack them will take damage.
This does step on Fedhas a bit, but stationary summons are neat, and unlike with Fedhas you actually *want* enemies to attack the briar patches.

Deck of Escape
- This deck is known for some of its cards being much more useful than others, which could be cool, but with Stack Five and Triple Draw around, it just means you throw away a lot of the cards instead of adapting to what you're given. So I'm trying to bring them more in line with each other.
- The Cloud is gone; it belonged in Destruction more than it belonged here anyway.

the Elixir
Grant 1+random2([Card power]+1)/1000 turns of both DUR_ELIXIR_HEALTH and DUR_ELIXIR_MAGIC (same duration for both).
Compared to old card:
- Duration is based on power instead of tier, and is never guaranteed to be more than 1.
- Does not heal allies.

Pick one: Exile or the Shaft
These cards are both doing basically the same thing, so pick one of them and get rid of the other. I think I like the Shaft a bit better, ironically.
Attempt to [banish/shaft] all monsters in LOS, checking MR with a pre-stepdown enchantment power of [Card power]/20. (Never banishes the player|still creates a shaft under the player).
Compared to old cards:
- Exile: Does not banish the player; works against any number of monsters but checks MR.
- Shaft: Checks MR instead of having a flat tier-based fail chance.

the Tomb
entomb(random2avg([Card power]+1,3)/20)
Compared to old card:
- different power formula; doesn't guarantee a minimum duration

Velocity
Cast Swiftness at [Card power]/100 power, and additionally grant random2([Card power]+1)/100-random2(51) turns of haste (no haste if the result is 0 or negative).
Compared to old card:
- Does not affect allies or enemies.
- Does not remove Slow.
- Based on card power instead of tier.

the Squid (new card)
Grants a status for 1+random2([Card power]+1)/200 turns. This status creates clouds of fog/smoke around you to block LOS, ring of flames style.

For this message the author duvessa has received thanks: 8
Airwolf, aperiodic, braveplatypus, byrel, chequers, gammafunk, nago, sdynet

Swamp Slogger

Posts: 178

Joined: Sunday, 11th May 2014, 11:26

Post Tuesday, 11th December 2018, 04:44

Re: dumb cards idea #500

Degeneration
Against unpolymorphable monsters, or if the MR check fails, simply do nothing. Yes sometimes you draw it against a gargoyle and are sad, that's okay, sometimes you draw Vitriol against an acid blob or Pain against a lich (except not anymore because I removed Pain)!

Well, but the odds of us throwing the Vitriol to acid blob are so low that we can't compare it to the probability of using Degeneration for the undead.

Deck of Summoning
- I think that all of these should have a summon duration of 3, except for Illusion since duration is the only thing it can really scale with power.

I think at least summon duration of 5 should be guaranteed. If all cards are the Rangers, Duration 3 is fine. Otherwise, they will approach the monster and disappear.

Pick one: Exile or the Shaft
These cards are both doing basically the same thing, so pick one of them and get rid of the other. I think I like the Shaft a bit better, ironically.
Attempt to [banish/shaft] all monsters in LOS, checking MR with a pre-stepdown enchantment power of [Card power]/20. (Never banishes the player|still creates a shaft under the player).
Compared to old cards:
- Exile: Does not banish the player; works against any number of monsters but checks MR.
- Shaft: Checks MR instead of having a flat tier-based fail chance.

I think the opposite is true. The most dangerous section of the game is the last floor of each. I don't want a card that becomes useless at that time.

the Tomb
entomb(random2avg([Card power]+1,3)/20)
Compared to old card:
- different power formula; doesn't guarantee a minimum duration

When power is strong, I want to get a rune door tomb. This may be too greedy.



It's an idea that I like as a whole.
It's much more intuitive than the original.

Tartarus Sorceror

Posts: 1737

Joined: Tuesday, 13th March 2012, 02:48

Post Tuesday, 11th December 2018, 04:59

Re: dumb cards idea #500

I think ya'll are missing part of the point of nemelex: It's OK for a card effect to be useless in some situations. The player is supposed to manage this by using various draw/stack/pick abilities, or simply by not waiting until he is one turn from death before blind drawing from decks.

Swamp Slogger

Posts: 178

Joined: Sunday, 11th May 2014, 11:26

Post Tuesday, 11th December 2018, 05:34

Re: dumb cards idea #500

Rast wrote:I think ya'll are missing part of the point of nemelex: It's OK for a card effect to be useless in some situations. The player is supposed to manage this by using various draw/stack/pick abilities, or simply by not waiting until he is one turn from death before blind drawing from decks.


Well, I understand. However, if so, the ability of the Triple Draw needs to be changed.
I have seen tomb, tomb, and tomb in the choice menu of Triple Draw.
So, when using triple draw in the last floor, it's also possible to see Shaft, Shaft, and Shaft, right?
This is a very terrible punishment. I lost one turn, three cards, and piety for nothing(Xom laughed like crazy!).

Swamp Slogger

Posts: 146

Joined: Wednesday, 30th August 2017, 23:08

Post Tuesday, 11th December 2018, 19:01

Re: dumb cards idea #500

sdynet wrote:Well, I understand. However, if so, the ability of the Triple Draw needs to be changed.
I have seen tomb, tomb, and tomb in the choice menu of Triple Draw.
So, when using triple draw in the last floor, it's also possible to see Shaft, Shaft, and Shaft, right?
This is a very terrible punishment. I lost one turn, three cards, and piety for nothing(Xom laughed like crazy!).


I mean... yes, this is possible. I don't see how you could possibly change this in a way to allow Nem to continue to be a god of cards. If you can stack them such that the order matters, and they're random, then draw three will always potentially give you 3 of the worst card in any situation. It's very unlikely, but really, if you don't like that, don't play with the god of cards?

For this message the author Stonar has received thanks: 2
byrel, Rast

Swamp Slogger

Posts: 178

Joined: Sunday, 11th May 2014, 11:26

Post Wednesday, 12th December 2018, 04:43

Re: dumb cards idea #500

Stonar wrote:I mean... yes, this is possible. I don't see how you could possibly change this in a way to allow Nem to continue to be a god of cards. If you can stack them such that the order matters, and they're random, then draw three will always potentially give you 3 of the worst card in any situation. It's very unlikely, but really, if you don't like that, don't play with the god of cards?


hm? if you don't like that, don't play that? Oh, that's very simple. That is the idea of throwing debate into the trash.
"Oh, you don't like this? Then leave." Hey, then, why is this forum here? 'It's very unlikely~' Let's say we haven't seen the back of this.
I think Nem is a god of control random. It's different from Xom. If nothing can be changed Triple Draw, need the cost of this power decreases. This includes the possibility that there is no choice. However, if the modification is possible, at least two different cards should be presented. It's better to have two ways than to have no choice.

Dungeon Master

Posts: 622

Joined: Thursday, 23rd October 2014, 03:08

Post Wednesday, 12th December 2018, 21:59

Re: dumb cards idea #500

ok, to improve triple draw we will make it draw five cards instead of three, which should increase the chance of not getting useless cards. then as an additional buff we will also let you use all five drawn cards, so the player doesn't feel bad when they draw five amazing cards. since a player is unlikely to use all five cards in a single encounter, we'll let them keep the cards indefinitely in a special area in the menu, and have some way of letting the player choose the order the cards are used. thanks for implementing this triple draw buff, ebering

more seriously, the arguments put forward to justify improving triple draw are flimsy. the piety cost is minor (same as Trog's Hand, Channel Energy, Receive Corpses) and there are plenty of god abilities that cost resources and can result in a wasted turn, or are effectively a wasted turn. Another thing to note is that if Triple Draw gives you useless cards, that's still two turns not spent drawing those cards from the deck compared to just drawing them one at a time

For this message the author CanOfWorms has received thanks: 2
duvessa, Rast

Swamp Slogger

Posts: 178

Joined: Sunday, 11th May 2014, 11:26

Post Thursday, 13th December 2018, 02:13

Re: dumb cards idea #500

CanOfWorms wrote:more seriously, the arguments put forward to justify improving triple draw are flimsy. the piety cost is minor (same as Trog's Hand, Channel Energy, Receive Corpses) and there are plenty of god abilities that cost resources and can result in a wasted turn, or are effectively a wasted turn. Another thing to note is that if Triple Draw gives you useless cards, that's still two turns not spent drawing those cards from the deck compared to just drawing them one at a time


Obviously... I'm not wasting my time. Other gods have forgotten that there is a possibility of failing to use the power. I gave a stupid opinion. I'm sorry.

Swamp Slogger

Posts: 178

Joined: Sunday, 11th May 2014, 11:26

Post Wednesday, 20th February 2019, 03:49

Re: dumb cards idea #500

Siegurt wrote:I ran through a dozen or so new-nemlex users in a row this week just to try out corner cases and what not, the mechanics seem generally solid overall.

The only real problems I've seen with cards are:

Degeneration can actually be problematic, particularly early on before triple draw is available. As the game goes on, this is effect seems to go away, but particularly in the early dungeon you seem to end up sometimes making your situation noticeably worse when using destruction decks, several times I incidentally polymorphed something nonthreatening into something nasty while trying to get rid of something vaguely threatening onscreen. Orc packs (with priest and/or warrior in tow) and gnoll packs (with sergeant and/or priest) seemed particularly susceptible to the "I would like some extra help killing these, Nemelex, Aggghh, no! what the heck is with this result!?!? bad god, bad god!!" scenario.

Tomb, every time I used it, it prevented me from escaping, rather than helping me in any way (This was probably just bad luck, rather than an designed drawback, but I'm not sure how tomb could be balanced and also mostly-useful) Tomb, along with a lot of the 'escape' deck is obviously not useful if you have creatures who are already in melee range that you've overestimated your ability with, but the current incarnation seems to frequently be "Let's entomb you in with your enemies, even when they aren't next to you yet" which is rarely (if ever) useful. I started to actively avoid using it after the third time when it walled me in with killer bees I wasn't prepared for and I had to burn yet another teleport scroll, maybe I would've liked it at high cardpower late in the game, who knows.

These cards both had these problems before, but with Nemelex being easier to use, and feeling more focused and clean now, it's easier to see the flaws, as they are put into more stark relief against a cleaner more coherent background.

Both of these cards could probably be removed with no replacement, and I suspect they would not be missed?


Degeneration card is my favorite card, but I agree that it is difficult to use. If this shows a powerful monster in an early game where power are not prepared, it is very difficult to deal with...
IMHO, I think we can avoid the problem by separating effects by power level.
For example) effect of Degeneration
Power level 0: Fire degeneration bolt(Cancellable)
Power level 1: Fire degeneration of 5x5 size(Smite Targetting, Cancellable)
Power level 2: Same as before

Surely the Tomb card is ambiguous. The problem with this card is that if your intention and the effect of the card do not match exactly, the meaning of using the card is completely lost. The simplest solution is to trap the enemy like Zin's imprison, but I'm afraid it's too powerful an effect.

Swamp Slogger

Posts: 178

Joined: Sunday, 11th May 2014, 11:26

Post Sunday, 14th July 2019, 05:29

Re: dumb cards idea #500

I opened a PR: https://github.com/crawl/crawl/pull/1108
Pain card's level 2 effect:
Remove summon flayed ghost.
Added torment and bolt of draining. Torment does not damage the caster.

Cloud card effect:
moved to deck of destruction.
Make clouds under the enemy's feet. Instead, the size of clouds decreased from 3x3 to 1x1.

I've got other plans, but I've worked on the most annoying cards first.

Return to Game Design Discussion

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 15 guests

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