Proposal: Ru, god of balance and sacrifice


Although the central place for this kind of discussion is on the CDO wiki, some may find it helpful to discuss potential requests and suggestions here first.

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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 19:24

Proposal: Ru, god of balance and sacrifice

Iashol, god of sacrifice and balance

Iashol is a god of balacing scales and sacrifice who knows that power and loss are balanced, and that those who seek power lose as much as they gain, and those who lose willingly get great power in exchange. Iashol is a formless entity, having given up its own form piece by piece in exchange for ever-greater power and wisdom. Iashol does not seek the worship of mortals, but does desire to mediate the efforts of mortals to receive power through sacrifice. Worshippers of Iashol gain immense personal power in proportion to the extent that they voluntarily give up.

Piety
Piety does not decay and is not used for abilities.

Iashol has no conducts and no penance and cannot be angered, but that which is sacrificed to Iashol can never be regained, even if Iashol is abandoned.

Adherants of Iashol are periodically offered three Sacrifice abilities, each of which grants piety in exchange for adding limitations. The abilities will remain available through the (a)bility menu for a while (think Vehumet memorization). The exact sacrifice being offered will be specified in cases where a sacrifice could have multiple possible outcomes, so the adherent cannot give up something without agreeing specifically to what they are giving up.

    Sacrifice words: When wounded, you get the -Scrolls status for several turns. (~30 piety)
    Sacrifice taste: When wounded, you get the -Potions status for several turns. (~30 piety)
    Sacrifice a hand: Lose a ring slot, lose access to two-handed weapons and shields. (80 piety)
    Sacrifice purity: Gain a level of a random mutation from among {shoutitis, degeneration, deformed body, slow healing} or {-2 to a stat} as a permanent, “racial” mutation. (~20 piety for former group, ~5 for the latter) (can be taken more than once)
    Sacrifice essence: Gain a level of a random mutation from among -10% mp, -20 MR, -wizardry as a permanent, “racial” mutation. (variable piety) (can be taken more than once)
    Sacrifice health: Gain random mutation from among -10% hp, -3 EV, -3 AC as a permanent, “racial” mutation. (~30 piety) (can be taken more than once)
    Sacrifice Stealth: Stealth skill is locked and stealth score is set to 0. (~25 piety)
    Sacrifice Artifice: You can no longer train Evocations. You can no longer evoke anything other than polearms. (~25 piety)
    Sacrifice Nimbleness: Dodging skill is locked and set to 0. (~15 piety, or ~45 if Sacrifice Durability is already selected)
    Sacrifice Durability: Armour skill is locked and set to 0. (~15 piety, or ~45 if Sacrifice Nimbleness is already selected)
    Sacrifice Arcana: Randomly lock one of {Charms or Translocations or Necromancy or Conjurations} and one of {Summoning, Transmutation, Hexes} and oneof {Fire, Ice, Earth, Air, Poison}. The player may not cast any spell of the locked schools. (variable piety between 20 and 40, depending on what is chosen) (can be chosen up to two times).
    Sacrifice Sanity: The player gets the "horror" status when viewing bloody tiles. The status imposes slaying penalties and negative wizardry proportional to the number of tiles in sight.
    Sacrifice Love: All monsters are hostile to the player, including summons.

After activating a Sacrifice, the piety is granted immediately, giving players the option to (for example) gouge out their own eye in an emergency in exchange for greater power.

Rewards:
*: Aura of awe (passive): Any time a monster would act within LOS, it has a (piety/10)% chance to cower in awe instead.
*: Alternately, if Gozag uses this ability, (passive): Any time an enemy in LOS would attack, it has a (piety/20)% chance to attack itself or one if its allies.
**: Roiling aura (passive): Monsters that damage you have a piety-dependent chance to be given statuses from among mute, paralyze, blind, and corona.
***: Recharge (active, costs exhaustion and draining): Heals 5d(piety/25) hp and 5d(piety/50) mp.
****: Power leap (active, exhaustion, 6 mp): move to a tile within 3 tiles and deal piety-based damage to all adjacent enemies.
*****: Aura cataclysm (active, costs exhaustion and draining): Do serious damage and also potentially serious statuses and haunt-type summons to all enemies in LOS.

Why Iashol?
Mechanically, Iashol offers several new things to Crawl: Novel, non-grindy piety gain combined with stable piety, an interesting and different way to allow the player to "spend" resources to gain access to god powers.

Iashol also allows for a less fussy form of god worship (no constant sacrifices, no irritating conducts) but while providing real, meaningful drawbacks in direct proportion to the amount of power you receive from Iashol, which to me seems like a good thing. Obviously, the exact drawbacks, their piety values, and the exact powers can all be tweaked; I chose these starting ones to highlight the sorts of things that could be done.

Iashol's abilities can complement a wide variety of different characters, and its sacrifice ability encourages unique playstyles and interesting choices: When I join Iashol, do I sacrifice a lot right now in exchange for a quick power burst, or do I hold off to see what tools I might want to make use of, and only sacrifice once I have a clearer sense of what options I might want to avoid?

Lastly, Iashol offers new types of enforced challenge play that can be used for self-imposed challenge runs or for interesting community challenges.

What can be tweaked
* The exact sacrifices and their piety values.
* The exact abilities and when they are gained.
* Whether piety gain from sacrifices is immediate or gradual.
* Whether spell school sacrifices are chosen or randomized (e.g., you only choose to sacrifice spell schools, and after you do you lose access to 3 random spell schools and gain proportional piety as above).
* Whether sacrifices can be made anywhere or only at an altar.

Edit: cleaned up formatting. Edit2: fixed typo in title. Edit3: Made changes based on feedback. Edit4: Made another round of edits based on the current state of the project. Edit4: Changed thread title, but not anything in the post.
Last edited by Lasty on Sunday, 20th July 2014, 17:04, edited 6 times in total.

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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 20:32

Re: Porposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Well, it's definitely novel.

I see some similarities with Chei. In exchange for sacrificing your move speed, Chei grants you a permanent bonus (Chei stats) and very strong active powers (Bend Time, Slouch, Step from Time). This god's powers seem weak in comparison, but presumably movement speed is a larger sacrifice than the stuff you're proposing here.

It seems weird that there's no new ability at 5*. Presumably you'd have to give up a lot of body parts to get there, and gaining nothing new seems rather insulting. A possible issue here is that people would figure out an optimal build where they give up x, y, and z and just stay at 4* piety. So IMO the abilities should go up dramatically with piety to incentivize players to make more sacrifices. And a lot of balancing will be necessary to ensure that the amount of piety for each sacrifice is appropriate.

The devil's in the details, I'm afraid. It seems to me this kind of thing will be extremely hard to get right. But with the right proposal then maybe it could be fun.

Btw, on a non-crawl related note, this reminds me of RL people selling body parts for money in less privileged parts of the world. YMMV.

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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 20:35

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

You don't gain a new ability at 5*, but your first three abilities all scale up with piety, so there's reason to gain more piety even w/o another ability. Still, I'm fine with there being another 5* ability, if a good one can be devised. Passive chance to controlled teleport after taking heavy damage? An activated escape ability? I'll consider options.

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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 20:48

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

the piety gain system as a trade-off with capacities is definitely worth trying
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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 22:26

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Seems to me that there will almost always be a good 20-40% of these conducts you can almost immediately know you don't care about for your 3-rune game. And since the rewards accrue immediately this would represent a *MASSIVE* power-spike the moment you hit the temple. Imagine, for arguments sake, playing Okuwaru and *instantly* getting access to finesse, heroism, and two drops the moment you join, without any time taken.

I'd say that you might need to pair invocations in there somewhere at the very least, so that these *very* powerful auras take some work to get going. Perhaps every point in invocations allows for another sacrifice (27 max sacrifices).

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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 22:39

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I really like this idea. The ideas for what you can sacrifice seem like they would work, but here are some thoughts and recommendations:

1.) Isahol offers you possible sacrifices of a severity that escalates with piety. As you explore new areas (and/or gain experience) you get occasional prompts. "What are you willing to sacrifice, Mortal?" — You'd get a few choices at a time through the (a)bilities menu, so there is still a (non-trivial) decision to be made. However that decision evolves over time, which avoids the problem of min-maxing and simple optimization strategies that was pointed out already by DracheReborn. At any given time, however, you have a choice of at least two possible sacrifices to make (until you reach max piety, I suppose).

2.) Base piety gain for each sacrifice can be predetermined and should be based on severity, but actual piety gain should perhaps go through some other kind of formula by which it is multiplied by various factors based on severity of former sacrifices, character level, etc. (I think people who join Isahol at a very high char level, late in the game, should be penalized. This is easy to justify in terms of flavor—the sacrifices of the wealthy and powerful are not as meaningful to Isahol; it is much easier to sacrifice something when you have a lot already.)

3.) Also maybe the right balance to strike is giving a fraction of the piety gain from sacrifices instantaneously, with the remainder being doled out over time as one explores (and/or gains experience). The exact fraction given immediately can be randomized, even. This would prevent people having absolute control over when they hit a certain piety level, which could lead to fiddly play as people "fine tune" piety level. Best to avoid that.

4.) Perhaps at max piety you start getting offers to swap your sacrifices around? What you have given up will never be regained, but Isahol is the god of balance, and not just of sacrifice. You gotta bear the cross, but at high piety he'll let you swap out the exact type of cross you want to bear. (I just wouldn't want the god to become *completely* static at high piety, you know? It would be nice if there were still some interesting decisions being posed even at max piety.)

5.) A much kinder version of this god involves "undoing" sacrifices, but losing the piety, while under Isahol's worship. (Piety *loss* in this case would be fully instantaneous, of course.) Indeed, you can even have the piety cost be greater than the gain, so you can't come out ahead while constantly shifting things around and taking on additional sacrifices during relatively easier areas for your character. Also, you could have all sacrifices undone upon leaving the god, however, you are faced with really tough wrath.

6.) Give Isahol more auras, but you can only choose one aura to be active at a time.

EDIT: BountyHunter's idea to incorporate invocations could also work as a way to put a brake on Isahol, so you can't become a superhero immediately upon worship. However I think invocations skill makes a lot more sense for active abilities.

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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 22:48

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I agree. The only reason I use invocations is it involves the least change to the current system outlined by the OP. That, and invocations is the closest thing we have to "god-training" skill.
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Post Monday, 24th February 2014, 23:31

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Just some quick comments: the proposal is radical, and I like the gist of it.

One issue is that you have to be able to explain the god to players. I reckon it would be harder for this god than for Nemelex (and we do at most a decent job at Nemelex either).

Another issue is xp parking: this comes up occasionally already (mostly theoretically, perhaps more now with the new draining mechanic). In order to be able to work down the xp counter for Recharge and Cataclysm *safely*, you can leave some xp chunks in the dungeon and come back when needed. This can be worked around but is not trivial (for example, "only monsters not yet detected" is not good enough). I am saying this because I am worried the god might inevitably lead to degenerate behaviour like this.

For comparison: there is an old proposal about "constant piety" which is similar in spirit. (wiki entry) There, you pay with maxhp only. Thematically, this is poorer than sacrificing limbs and eyes. Mechanically, it is much easier.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 01:10

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Okay... this looks pretty interesting on paper, but I have some criticism:

Mechanics:
-What about amulet of faith?
-What about the monk special?
-What about making shunning this god not impossible but downright stupid?
--AFAIK no other god leaves you an absolute cripple just for leaving him/her, or at least doesn't necessarily do so. I.E. AFAIK leaving any other god doesn't have crippling, permanent, strategic costs. Of course maybe this is part of the point, but I think it'd be better if on renouncing religion the god gives the apostate a refund and usual wrath. Otherwise, seriously, I think it'd be TOO special.
--This also goes against stated flavor, because where's the balance in taking away your powers but not giving back your body parts?
-What prevents the players from simply sacrificing skills they don't plan to use at all and keep their body in good shape?
--Why are school skills listed and given a piety value but not weapon skills? (sorry if this is an oversight on my part)
---You forgot about Hexes too!
-It intrudes on species mechanics (irrevocably forbidden items, irrevocable mutations, irrevocably forbidden skills) (more on this below)
-Species with already severely limited skills (felids, octopodes) would have a LOT less to sacrifice, and that which they can sacrifice means a LOT more to them (except octopodes I guess, they have eight arms to give away...)
-It doesn't have another awesome aura power at 5* :|
-No conducts: You say no conducts, but I see a bucketload of enforced conducts that stay in place even after renouncing religion.
--(NoScrolls, NoPotions, NoTwoHanders, NoShields, NoMagicSchool, OneRingToBindThemInDisability)
--No wonder the god can't be angered for not following his conducts, he's so possessive and controlling he makes you incapable of sinning forever.
---Does this remind you of anything?
-No wrath: You say no wrath, but I see that his/her wrath is permanent, irrevocable, and suffered from the moment you devote yourself to him/her, rather than since the moment you abandon him/her


Flavor:
-Balance: Not much. I don't see any particulars about upholding balance or balancing out situations, in it's current form it is less about balance and more about so-called "equivalent exchange" from Fullmetal Alchemist (lose an arm, gain powers), the "balance" aspect of the god is more an informed ability than anything. This is a god of handicapping, not of balance.
-Sacrifice: Well, this is perfectly clear, there are sacrifices involved.
-Goriness: A lot of.
-Terror and Awe: Up to eleven. Monsters cower in fear before a broken being suffused with divine power. Hey wait, that's... that's actually kinda cool.


Things I Actually Like:
-Sacrificing an arm and/or an eye sounds cool, as does sacrificing skills. Renouncing to scrolls or pots does sound not cool, but YMMV (mummies)
-The aura powers are awesome. Especially Aura of Awe and Roiling Aura. Really awesome. Thumbs up :D
-The whole "broken body as a vessel of incredible divine power" thing is pretty rad, but rather than "of balance" I think it would be better characterized as a "scary dogmatic god" kinda zin-meets-ashenzari but getting it's payment in blood. Your blood. It need not be necessarily evil, but I think it's rather a neutral god than a god intent on keeping balance, and being a neutral god is nothing special; a neutral god is simply one that isn't inherently good or evil.

Suggestion:
-Instead of removing body parts, the god could petrify them or something similar, thus denying you their use but de-petrifying them on renouncing religion (I am aware that this probably defeats a great part of its purpose)
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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 06:31

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I guess upon renouncing the god, you would just not get it's benefits and would slowly recover your sacrificed stuff (this god's "Wrath" would actually be to restore your sacrifices to you) ?
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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 06:54

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

a positive wrath? how.... singular.
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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 08:33

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Well, wrath would probably still have most of your body disabled. Maybe you only get bits of yourself back as Iashol's wrath depletes (and meanwhile you're getting hit with his other wrath effects, whatever those end up being). Being smited (smitten? smote?) with wrath effects while half-blind, missing an arm, and unable to drink potions doesn't sound fun.
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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 09:16

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I'm imagining this. seems very, veru fun.
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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 15:29

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Thanks for all the thoughtful feedback, everyone! You've brought up a lot of great concerns and ideas. I think they break down into a few broad catagories:

1) Piety gain.

The main issues described here relate to the non-sacrifice nature of some of the sacrifices (20%-40% having no impact in a 3-rune, according to BountyHunterSAx), the regularity of piety gain and thus min-maxability, and the way that heavy early sacrifices can gain power too fast.

The most "not-needed in a 3-rune game" set of sacrifices I can find is if you sacrifice all magic skill, an eye, dodging, and stealth, you could play a heavy-armoured melee guy with 175 piety. As compared with worshipping Trog, you'd be giving up a) Trog's powers and gifts, b) the possibility of converting to another god in the future and training magic, c) training Dodging to get EV, and d) the ability to be even a little stealthy ever. Of course, under the written proposal, you'd be able to get the power boost immediately, and that probably is too good since it would trivialize the most dangerous part of the game.

I like BountyHunterSAx's proposal to limit the number of sacrifices you make to the amount of Invocations you have; for one thing it would incentivize people to make big sacrifices like a hand instead of a lot of small sacrifices like magic schools.

I could also accept that the magic school sacrifices might simply not work as written here. Sacrificing Transmutations (for example) is a fairly meaningless sacrifice for most characters. However, I like the idea of being able to give up a whole class of useful tools. Here are a few other takes on it:

* Only sacrifice the larger/better schools: Sacrifice Charms, Sacrifice Conjurations, Sacrifice Necromancy, Sacrifice Translocations, Sacrifice Summoning, for example.
* Sacrifice a school of your choice plus a number of other schools chosen by the god.
* Sacrifice "magical knowledge" in general and lose access to a set of algorithmically-chosen schools.

As for amulet of faith and monks, I'm not certain that it would be bad for them to work exactly how they do. Amulet of faith's bonus would be larger than for some gods, but removing it would be even worse than for most gods. The monk bonus could reflect the cumulation of the series of minor sacrifices the monk made in their ascetic lifestyle prior to entering the dungeon. I think some playtesting would be required to determine whether there needs to be any special casing here.

2) No refunds.

I actually think this is important. True sacrifice means genuinely giving up something. If you can take it back (even at a penalty), then it's not a sacrifice, it's a loan. Sacrificing Charms is a meaningful drawback, but losing access to Charms until you feel like learning to cast Haste is not. Chopping off a hand is a meaningful drawback, but losing a hand until you find a good claymore is not.

Flavorwise, your god isn't taking and keeping what you sacrifice, he's enabling you to perform a ritual where you give up something permanently in exchange for the power generated by that act of sacrifice. If you later reject that power (by abandoning the god) that doesn't mean you get a full or partial refund, because it's not a transaction. You really did chop of your hand or whatever, and then you discarded the power you gained for doing so.

3) "Balance" flavor

This god isn't interested in creating balance, it's interested in exploiting balance of sacrifice and power. Iashol is a god whose symbol is a set of scales because it wishes for its devotees to understand that when one side of a scale sinks (perhaps weighed down by a severed arm), the other side of that scale rises in proportion. Perhaps there's a better way to explain it than using the word "balance", since this god is not trying to enforce balance or enforce neutrality.

4) Some other notes people brought up:
dpeg wrote:One issue is that you have to be able to explain the god to players.


I'll work on this. Can you give me an example of the sort of explanation text I should be seeking to model off?

dpeg wrote:Another issue is xp parking


You're right. Let's make it much clearer and easier to implement: each activated ability can be used only once on each dungeon level. The auras suppressed by the healing ability return after visiting a floor on which the ability has never before been used (or if that still comes across as too grindy, reappears as soon as you go to a floor you've never entered before, or if still too grindy, your auras are not suppressed by the ability and the once-per-floor restriction will have to be enough).

psiweapon wrote:Why are school skills listed and given a piety value but not weapon skills?


I thought about it, but sacrificing weapon skills is no sacrifice unless you sacrifice all weapon skills, and I don't actually want to encourage people to sacrifice all weapon skills because it would encourage people to hit things with unskilled weapons, and people already do that plenty.

And I did forget hexes. I'd value them the same as Transmutations, though as said above, it does seem like the magic sacrifices need some work.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 15:55

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

God of giving up everything I'm not going to use to win to make what I am using to win even more unstoppable?

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 17:29

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Personally, I think the concept of a god who requires you to make permanent sacrifices for permanent piety is a cool concept. The flavor's good, and it's a nice change of pace from the usual situation of piety being a resource that builds up over time and can be kept for powers or spent on powerful abilities.

On the other hand, I also feel like the concept of making sacrifices to get perks already sort of exists in Crawl. We've already got 2+ gods who do this. Chei and Trog both require you to make huge sacrifices for extremely powerful bonuses. The good gods (particularly Zin) and Ashenzari too, to a lesser extend.

Not only that, this is practically the defining concept behind nearly all races. Sacrificing equipment slots for powers (or for different equipment options in other areas) is extremely common: Octopodes, Spriggans, Felids, Ogers, Trolls, Draconians, Tengu, and Demonspawn do it. Sacrificing certain skills for powers is sort of done by any race with terrible aptitudes in specific areas, such as Minotaurs. Formicids sacrifice the ability to teleport, blink, or haste for some powerful abilities and equipment options. Deep Dwarves sacrifice natural healing for powerful abilities and a free wand of healing.

Sacrificing stats, abilities, or equipment slots for other bonuses is already somewhat of a core mechanic of planning a character in Crawl.

Now, a god that lets you choose what you sacrifice sounds neat, but also sounds like it could be a nightmare to balance. Already some of the hand-crafted sacrifice-reward tradeoffs are extremely powerful - Trog requires making a massive sacrifice, yet is also one of the most powerful gods in the game. Part of this is that you can plan for the sacrifice. Trog's conduct would be crippling for a DE, but no one makes a DEBe unless they're looking for a challenge. Instead, people combine Trog with characters that don't really use magic much anyway, like trolls or minotaurs, and so they get incredibly powerful benefits in return for what is a fairly small sacrifice for that character.

This is what would happen for the current god as described. Since you get to pick your sacrifices, you would only take the god if you don't need some of those things anyway, and then you'd get incredibly strong powers by sacrificing some bonuses you didn't really need. It wouldn't be the god of sacrifice, it would be the God of Min-Maxing.

The god seems much more interesting if you can't guarantee you don't care about the things you sacrifice. Being at max piety should make you feel like a crippled superhero.

Personally, I like and into's suggestion of being occasionally prompted for sacrifices, rather than having all of them as options from the beginning. It forces you to adapt to the sacrifices that are asked of you, rather than planning your sacrifices in advanced based on what abilities your character won't need.

An idea that I like even better, although it's much more of a departure from the original suggestion, would be to also randomize the rewards somewhat. Rather than offering you sacrifices for piety and granting pre-determined powers as your piety increases, he could offer sacrifices for both a piety increase and a new power, and as your piety increases, both the sacrifices and rewards increase too. So maybe at low piety, you get

"Isahol demands* a sacrifice! Choose one:
a: Sacrifice might for discretion (Str - 2, Stlth+)
b: Sacrifice wit for body (Int - 2, HP + 5%)
c: Sacrifice wellness for flight (-rPois, evokeable flight)"

(These are obviously just examples and may not be balanced)

*Personally, I'd say there should be a penalty (piety loss or pennance) for declining a sacrifice, hence the word "demands" instead of something like "offers" or "requests". It seems better both flavor-wise and gameplay-wise if you can't just keep declining sacrifices until you get one you're happy with.

At higher piety, you'd get much more extreme sacrifices like trading an arm for Aura of Awe. This way, you have to improvise how to take advantage of the sacrifices and powers you get offered, instead of simply planning out which sacrifices your character can afford and which powers you want from the beginning.

Also, I kind of like the idea that the sacrifices are permanent while the bonuses go away during penance or abandonment. It's an interesting change of pace from the other gods. With any other god, abandoning them means losing both the conduct and the bonuses, but comes with additional penalties. With this god, there could be little-to-no additional bonuses, you just never get to drop the conduct.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 17:39

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Arkhan wrote:God of giving up everything I'm not going to use to win to make what I am using to win even more unstoppable?


There are a lot of ways this could be balanced though so that this doesn't happen in a way that is unfair.

Also there is some precedent in game, already, for much quicker than usual piety gain: =faith, Zin gold donation, joining with Jiyva or Nemelex and sacrificing a dungeon full of junk, etc. So while this is a more radical take on that concept, it isn't totally out of left field. Isahol piety gain can be balanced in ways similar to those effects.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 18:37

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Initial post updated. I've edited the sacrifice ability to be usable once per level of Invocations, and I've changed the sacrifice skills section to the following:
Sacrifice Stealth: Stealth skill is locked and stealth score is set to 0. (25 piety)
Sacrifice Artifice: You can no longer train Evocations. You can no longer evoke anything other than polearms. (25 piety)
Sacrifice Nimbleness: Dodging skill is locked and set to 0. (10 piety, or 35 if Sacrifice Durability is already selected)
Sacrifice Durability: Armour skill is locked and set to 0. (10 piety, or 35 if Sacrifice Nimbleness is already selected)
Sacrifice Arcana: Randomly lock one of {Charms or Translocations or Necromancy or Conjurations} and one of {Summoning, Transmutation, Hexes} and two of {Fire, Ice, Earth, Air, Poison}. The player may not cast any spell of the locked schools. (variable piety between 20 and 40, depending on what is chosen) (can be chosen up to two times).

I've also updated the two active powers to:
***: Recharge (active, no cost): Heals 5d(piety/25) hp and 5d(piety/50) mp and disables all god powers until you leave the current dungeon level. May only be used once on each dungeon level.
******: Aura cataclysm (active, costs 8 MP): Apply powerful miscast effects to all monsters in LOS. May only be used twice on each dungeon level.

A few people have mentioned that it seems like you can give up things that will be no loss and get powerful abilities in exchange. If anyone thinks that's possible with the current list of sacrifices and abilities, please give an example. I've tried to make sure that characters can only get modest power without giving up anything that will be a meaningful restriction, and that's no more than adherents of other gods get.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 18:51

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Lasty wrote:If anyone thinks that's possible with the current list of sacrifices and abilities, please give an example.


MiGl.
  Code:
Sacrifice a eye: attacks made at range get -3 accuracy for every tile of distance. (20 piety)
Sacrifice essence: Lose 2 max MP and 15 MR. (20 piety)
Sacrifice health: Lose 1 AC, 1 EV, 5 max HP. (20 piety)
Sacrifice Stealth: Stealth skill is locked and stealth score is set to 0. (25 piety)
Sacrifice Artifice: You can no longer train Evocations. You can no longer evoke anything other than polearms. (25 piety)
Sacrifice Arcana: Randomly lock one of {Charms or Translocations or Necromancy or Conjurations} and one of {Summoning, Transmutation, Hexes} and two of {Fire, Ice, Earth, Air, Poison}. The player may not cast any spell of the locked schools. (variable piety between 20 and 40, depending on what is chosen) (can be chosen up to two times).


Piety 150-190. You can add random mutation(s) also.

SpEn

  Code:
Sacrifice a eye: attacks made at range get -3 accuracy for every tile of distance. (20 piety)
Sacrifice a hand: Lose a ring slot, lose access to two-handed weapons and shields. (80 piety)
Sacrifice essence: Lose 2 max MP and 15 MR. (20 piety)
Sacrifice health: Lose 1 AC, 1 EV, 5 max HP. (20 piety)
Sacrifice Artifice: You can no longer train Evocations. You can no longer evoke anything other than polearms. (25 piety)
Sacrifice Durability: Armour skill is locked and set to 0. (10 piety, or 35 if Sacrifice Nimbleness is already selected)
Sacrifice Arcana: Randomly lock one of {Charms or Translocations or Necromancy or Conjurations} and one of {Summoning, Transmutation, Hexes} and two of {Fire, Ice, Earth, Air, Poison}. The player may not cast any spell of the locked schools. (variable piety between 20 and 40, depending on what is chosen) (can be chosen up to two times).


195-215 piety with single Sacrifice Arcana.


These two abilities are too cheap IMHO:
Sacrifice essence: Lose 2 max MP and 15 MR. (20 piety)
Sacrifice health: Lose 1 AC, 1 EV, 5 max HP. (20 piety)

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:03

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I'd rather go with the suggested randomized, small-scale, more frequent sacrifices.
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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:21

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I could not agree with Psiweapon more. Just *thinking* about it makes me feel incredibly excited to try out. You could even scrap the invocations-to-pay aspect. Here, let me explain:


Let us assume that you're offered a pair of sacrifices at regular intervals - something timed to work out about as frequently as Vehumet spell-offers. Not sure how to apportion it out, but whatever. Now, *just* like with Vehumet, you only get a brief time to make up your mind - do I want to seize this piety gain or not? You can't min-max pre-game, but it's not Xom-like punishment since it's always optional.

Just imagine running a Minotaur and making a hard choice. . . only for hte next trade-pair to be something you don't mind giving up. Or, conversely, to hold out longer for a good trade but then that trade just doesn't come.

And there's already a precedent in crawl for these "life-changing shifts" that dramatically alter playstyle at odd intervals as the game goes on -- the Demonspawn. Which, in turn, is awesome.



Also limiting it to one chosen aura at a time (possibly using the ^ menu like with Nemelex) opens up a lot of cool tactical options.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:24

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Sandman25 wrote:MiGl.
<omitted>
Piety 150-190. You can add random mutation(s) also.

SpEn
<omitted>
195-215 piety with single Sacrifice Arcana.

These two abilities are too cheap IMHO:
Sacrifice essence: Lose 2 max MP and 15 MR. (20 piety)
Sacrifice health: Lose 1 AC, 1 EV, 5 max HP. (20 piety)


Actually, I would call those significant penalties. The former can probably never cast anything, has penalties to ranged attacks of any type, can't ever be even the smallest amount stealthy, can never evoke anything, and has small-but-meaningful penalties to HP, EV, AC, and MR. The latter has significant penalties to ranged attacks of any type, can't use a shield and can only use one ring, can never get extra AC from training armour skill, can never evoke anything, has meaningful penalties to HP and AC, and has quite likely lost access to a significant chunk of the most meaningful spells the character could cast.

Honestly, these examples make me think that the penalties are slightly too harsh at the moment. It's certainly far harsher than any other god's conduct.

For the last abilities, do you mean they should give more piety or less piety or heavier penalties or lighter penalties? I'm not sure if it's clear, but it should be possible to take sacrifice health/purity/essence any number of times each.
Last edited by Lasty on Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:27, edited 1 time in total.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:26

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I could accept the randomized sacrifice offers, though it wouldn't be my first choice. I'd prefer to allow the player to keep all auras up at once: they've paid for them, they should get those powers, and thematically I like the idea that the player has a single aura of growing personal power that has a variety of useful effects. If they switched to one-aura-at-a-time, each aura would probably need to be buffed.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:32

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Lasty wrote:
Sandman25 wrote:Sacrifice essence: Lose 2 max MP and 15 MR. (20 piety)
Sacrifice health: Lose 1 AC, 1 EV, 5 max HP. (20 piety)

For the last abilities, do you mean they should give more piety or less piety or heavier penalties or lighter penalties? I'm not sure if it's clear, but it should be possible to take sacrifice health/purity/essence any number of times each.


I mean "2 max MP and 15 MR" and "1 AC, 1 EV and 5 max HP" are irrelevant for high XL characters. Would you wear rings with "+2 max MP and +15 MR" or "+1 AC, +1 EV and +5 max HP"? I almost never wear octopus rings for similar reasons. Standard ring with +4 AC or +4 EV or +9 MP is better IMHO.
Also they bring 20 piety each while abandoning either Armour or Dodging brings only 10 piety.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:55

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I'm open to tweaking those numbers, either in terms of what you give per sacrifice or in terms of how much piety each sacrifice is worth. Making them much larger felt wrong, but I could just have it calibrated wrong. Keep in mind that most characters aren't end-game characters. The MR penalty from sacrifice essence can actually be pretty nasty, and losing a small portion from all three major lines of defense is nasty too.

Sacrificing just armor or just dodging is only 10 piety because for a lot of characters, losing one of the two isn't a huge problem. Losing both of the two is worth significantly more because losing both is way worse than losing one of the two. Sacrificing health/essence means giving up something you already have, whereas sacrificing armour/dodging means giving up the ability to put XP into those in exchange for the rewards those skills bring; you still get to assign the XP you would have put into those skills into something else instead.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 19:58

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Lasty wrote:I'm open to tweaking those numbers, either in terms of what you give per sacrifice or in terms of how much piety each sacrifice is worth. Making them much larger felt wrong, but I could just have it calibrated wrong. Keep in mind that most characters aren't end-game characters. The MR penalty from sacrifice essence can actually be pretty nasty, and losing a small portion from all three major lines of defense is nasty too.


Perhaps it could be better to lose some percentage of HP/MP/AC/EV similar to Frail and Low MP mutations. It scales better with XL.

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 20:15

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

"sacrifice purity" grants one random bad mutation.
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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 20:59

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I suppose one way to do it would be:
Sacrifice Health (random mutation from among -10% hp, -3 EV, -3 AC) (20 piety)
Sacrifice Essense (random mutation from among -10% mp, -20 MR, -wizardry) (20 piety)
Sacrifice Purity (random mutation from among {shoutitis, degeneration, deformed body, slow healing} or {-2 to a stat}) (20 piety for former group, 5 for the latter)

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Post Tuesday, 25th February 2014, 20:59

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Felid only: Sacrifice Life, +?

Or maybe it could be available to everyone, and doing so does exactly what you'd think it does except the player's soul is claimed and their ghost isn't made. (Or maybe this is just what happens if you ctrl-Q with Iashol)

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Post Wednesday, 26th February 2014, 22:25

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice


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Post Friday, 4th April 2014, 12:56

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I'm starting work on implementing this god, though that's not to say that the devteam will necessarily accept it once implemented. It'll probably take me a while, as I'm still getting used to both C++ and the crawl codebase. I'm currently aiming for the version of this proposal where Iashol periodically offers you a choice of sacrifices to make, and you gain variably piety based on the how much of a sacrifice it is, but the abilities you gain from Iashol are fixed for any given piety level.

I also added a new sacrifice to the dev wiki:
Sacrifice Sanity: Whenever an event would create a blood spot, lose 5% of current health and gain MR- status. (40 piety)

There are also some details that need to be worked out and which I'll be asking for help with. The first is: what should the piety rank titles be for Iashol? Ideally they should reflect some of the following: quest for power, sacrifice, discipline.

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Post Friday, 4th April 2014, 16:06

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Right now I'm thinking:

Seeker
* Initiate
** Journeyman
*** Adept
**** Awakened Spirit
***** Freed Spirit
****** Spirit Incarnate

Suggestions welcome.

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Post Friday, 4th April 2014, 17:38

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Limiting abilities with number of uses/level seems to be artifical for me (I know that Corruption already does this, but there it is neccessary as it modifies the dungeon features). Limiting recharge with 1 use/level forces Deep Dwarves to go back to cleared levels if they want to use it for out-of-combat healing, and this is probably a bad mechanism.

I suggest to replace the uses/level limit with an XP-dependent cooldown (like the reactivation of elemental evokers). The cooldown for Aura cataclysm could be relatively low, for example even a level 27 character should regain the ability from the XP rewards of 3-4 tier 1 demons; the cooldown of Recharge could be longer and disallow all other abilities while Recharge is unavailable (I like the idea of a panic button disallowing the general abilities for some time).

The "roll twice" implementation of Aura of power would be unintuitive, because it would give big boosts in cases when the variance is big (for example 1d42 damage) and almost nothing when the variance is small (7d6 damage). (Unless we are allowed to reroll each dice separately in the sum of multiple dices, replacing 3d6 with max(d6, d6)+ max(d6, d6)+ max(d6, d6).) I don't think "one big dice" vs "lost of small dice" is used as a purposeful distinction between otherwise similar effects (or if it is used, it isn't noticeable and/or described in the helps), so with this implementation there would be a spoilery lists of effects made much more powerful by Aura of power.

Aside from this spoilery differentiation of damage sources, the roll twice effect isn't visible as the rolls are hidden in Crawl. Replacing it with two simple multipliers on damage (before reduction by AC) -- for example *0.8 on all incoming damage and *1.25 on all damage dealt by the player does basically the same thing and is easier to implement/describe/understand.

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Post Friday, 4th April 2014, 20:01

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

The original design was XP-limited, but there was some discussion about people leaving "xp pockets" alive to farm for safe aura recovery. The level limits can be changed (3x level? 5x?) if they give insufficient uses.

You raise a good point about the rerolling abilities, though the primary effect would be to normalize extremely bad rolls in general rather than strict damage boosts, and the multidie attacks already have the feature of being significantly more normalized. Adding a 25% bonus or something like that does much less to reduce low-end variance. I suppose that it doesn't specifically replicate any existing god abilities, so it wouldn't be problematic to add, but it strikes me as a less interesting effect. It's similar to having permanent half-strength Finesse.

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Post Friday, 4th April 2014, 20:28

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Lasty wrote:Right now I'm thinking:

Seeker
* Initiate
** Journeyman
*** Adept
**** Awakened Spirit
***** Freed Spirit
****** Spirit Incarnate

Suggestions welcome.


Seems kind of tame for the god of sacrifice.

(*) Shirker [under penance]
Volunteer
* Sufferer
** Afflicted
*** Agonized
**** Tortured
***** Martyr
****** Saint

I actually wanted to use "Tormented", but that's already a Kiku title.

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Post Friday, 4th April 2014, 20:55

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Lasty wrote:The original design was XP-limited, but there was some discussion about people leaving "xp pockets" alive to farm for safe aura recovery. The level limits can be changed (3x level? 5x?) if they give insufficient uses.


Yes, XP pockets are also bad. What about multiplying all XP gain with exp(constant1*min(0, (time between spotting the monster and killing it) - constant2)) with relatively small constant1 and large constant2 ? This would weaken XP pocket creation (elemental evokales and draining status and temporary mutation removal already reward XP pockets) and going back to kill ghosts/uniques after clearing a few levels.

Lasty wrote:You raise a good point about the rerolling abilities, though the primary effect would be to normalize extremely bad rolls in general rather than strict damage boosts, and the multidie attacks already have the feature of being significantly more normalized. Adding a 25% bonus or something like that does much less to reduce low-end variance. I suppose that it doesn't specifically replicate any existing god abilities, so it wouldn't be problematic to add, but it strikes me as a less interesting effect. It's similar to having permanent half-strength Finesse.


I agree that +constant% damage isn't very interesting -- something more interesting would be better. (Minor note: it is a bit different from Finesse because it is better against high AC foes.) I don't think that extremely bad damage rolls have a significant impact -- misses are more severe random effects and usually the player kills a monster in several hits (averaging out their effect), or the monster is trivial, and then it's unimportant. On the other hand, weakening monster hits may be interesting, as making heavily over-average hits rare helps AC-based characters and fragile characters like Felids for whom a high-damage large rock/similar effect can be fatal.

What about making the power only affect attacks targetting the player, by reducing their damage (especially if they would deal lots of damage)? This is different from AC/damage shaving (affects low repeated damage more severely) and dodging (affects all damage amounts equally). For example let new damage = (player's maximum hp) * (original damage) / (player's maximum hp + original damage) this would mean the following:
  • low damage is almost completely unaffected
  • high damage is reduced, for example an attack dealing 50% maxhp would only deal 33% maxhp, an attack dealing 33% maxhp would only deal 25% maxhp
  • while the player is at maxhp, a singel attack is never fatal
If this is too powerful or the last effect is undesired, then replace "player's maximum hp" with "constant*player's maximum hp" in the formula in both places (to keep the first property).

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Post Saturday, 5th April 2014, 22:33

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Lasty wrote:I also added a new sacrifice to the dev wiki:
Sacrifice Sanity: Whenever an event would create a blood spot, lose 5% of current health and gain MR- status. (40 piety)


I assume this is per event, and not per blood spot? Otherwise Flayed Ghosts would get kind of ridiculous.

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Post Sunday, 6th April 2014, 03:59

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I love this god. As I've mentioned before, I like gods that demand something in return for their power, Chei being the best current example. Trog somewhat counts, but it's easy to get away with no magic when you're with trog, so not so much as chei. This god seems like it would be a more chei level sacrifice, and so I'm entirely on board.

I like the idea of Vehemut style offerings being made where you can choose between 2-3 options for a short period of time, will help with you not just going straight up to 200 piety. Other than that, everything seems good. Balance will be tough, I think in particular the 80 piety for giving up a hand might be a bit much, if you luck into something really strong. I have a +9 demon trident of electrocution in my current game - I'd happily take 80 piety and use it. Of course, how often do you get a weapon like that, but still. It's something that can be thrown into trunk and let people test it over and over, it's hard to tell just reading the thread.

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Post Monday, 7th April 2014, 14:04

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

I've got Iashol loading at a basic, do-nothing level. I'm working on the piety gain piece first, followed by the powers, since I suspect the powers are more likely to change significantly. Right now I'm going with the plan where players can make one of three sacrifices. Each sacrifice is an ability from the (a)bility menu, which means they will have separate help-text descriptions. However, some of the sacrifices have multiple possible versions, such as Sacrifice Purity and Sacrifice Arcana, and it's hard to represent what the exact version is on the (a)bility menu. I'm thinking that a brief explanation along with an "are you sure Y/N?" prompt should be given for all sacrifices, and that for these variable sacrifices, this prompt will let you know exactly what you're being asked to give up. Does that sound reasonable?

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Post Tuesday, 8th April 2014, 12:14

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Lasty: Yes, it does sound reasonable. As I said on the wiki page, it's really important that players see whether they reach another piety break point. Ideally, this can be done with a coarser scale than 0..200 (the greatest common divisor of sacrifice piety gains should be big -- is 20 possible?).

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Post Tuesday, 8th April 2014, 14:01

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Oh, I didn't realize that you had left comments on the devwiki. I'm going to respond here in an attempt to provoke slightly more discussion.

dpeg@devwiki wrote:It is crucial for players to reach piety breakpoints. Ideally, we can convey this without numbers – at the very least, a much coarser scale than 0…200 should do.


I mostly agree -- at the moment I'm thinking all sacrifices will give a multiple of 5 piety; most will give a multiple of 20 piety. I was thinking that in cases where players sacrifice a skill that already has experience invested, I would give extra piety based on the experience, but how I give that piety depends on one question: should players know exactly how much piety/sacrifice they need to give in order to hit the next breakpoint? Marginal piety gains do give improved results on most of the abilities, making sacrifices that don't get you a new ability still worthwhile.

dpeg@devwiki wrote:More ideas: Sacrifice Teleport, Sacrifice Blink, Sacrifice Movement Speed, Sacrifice Hearing, Sacrifice Warmth (permanent ice beast form).
Admittedly random ideas; feel free to delete right away. Some of these are bordering on other Crawl features (Formicid, Cheibriados), but so is “no casting”.


Sacrifice Teleport / Blink / Haste might be interesting, even though they do step on existing species/god conduct.

Sacrifice Hearing is very interesting: I assume it would suppress all "you hear" messages and all monster speech. Would it also suppress portal notifications? What else would it do? I think this could be a very interesting and unique penalty.

Sacrifice Warmth is also interesting. It's very extreme in a way that even Sacrifice a Hand isn't: you irrevocably turn into a form that can't wield any weapons or shields or wear armour. You get great UC out of it, but it seems like too severe a transition to me. It would probably have to be worth 100+ piety, and even then it would be fairly undesireable for non-felid/octopode characters. Perhaps there's another way to implement something similar: when hit by a cold attack, you transform into an ice beast until you gain enough XP/leave the level/etc.

I'm not a fan of the sacrifice movement conduct just because it's so central to another god. Granted, there's some overlap on the casting conducts and Trog/Dith/good gods, but I think the way it's implemented is sufficiently different to be worth doing.

dpeg@devwiki wrote:Awe is good. Roiling is crude but alright. Recharge: I don't like this mechanic; the fact that you have to superficially restrict to once per level is only one part of the problem — the other is that by shutting down the other god powers Recharge has little offensive potential.
Inspiring is okay although it might be possible to strengthen ally play much more with this god.
Power: not good. First, it is opaque. Second, it is not a uniform boost (attacks with low variance don't benefit at all). I think the desired effect could be achieved in other ways, too. For example: with a chance depending on piety, apply another attack of the same type.
Cataclysm: the effect itself is good; I find the cap to be inelegant. Maybe this is the price to pay for constant piety. — dpeg 2014-04-06 02:54


I think you're right about Power, and a few others have mentioned it as well. I'd like to find a better replacement that also makes combat better for the character, but ideally in a unique way that doesn't directly conflict with any sacrifices.

I actually like Recharge a lot, and I think the only problem right now is the limit on use. I'd much rather have it be something like "use any time you have your aura powers; on use retract aura powers until <no enemies in sight for 100 AUT / you leave the current level>". That way it becomes a powerful recovery option available once per fight but which comes at the cost of making the rest of the fight more dangerous.

As for Cataclysm, I'm not sure how to best limit the uses. It's not as good as (say) Corrupt, but it's way too strong to spam. It could be limited by costing max hp, costing, max mp, causing rot, costing piety temporarily (that piety would regrow as you gain XP, say), using an XP timer directly (like the elemental evokers), or by costing a large amount of HP and/or MP to use. I'm not yet sure what the best limit is, but I think you're right that the as-written version isn't well-designed.

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Post Tuesday, 8th April 2014, 20:33

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Some possible replacements for Aura of Power:


* Increase health regen by (piety / 2000) every AUT and mana regen by (piety / 4000) every AUT,
* Every time an enemy takes damage, 50% chance to regen 2 hp and 1 mp.
* Your melee (and ranged?) attacks gain fireball AOE centered on target and ignoring friendlies.
* Your melee (and ranged?) attacks gain AOE along the line of your attack.
* Each time you deal damage to a monster, have a chance of applying certain status effects.
* Damage you would receive greater than 10% of your maxhealth is reduced to 10% of your maxhealth.
* 50% chance to resist any, like dragonskin cloak.
* When walking into a new tile, you (melee | passively damage) all adjacent enemies.

Edit: obviously, not all of these. One or possibly two.

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Post Tuesday, 8th April 2014, 20:42

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

nagdon wrote:
Lasty wrote:The original design was XP-limited, but there was some discussion about people leaving "xp pockets" alive to farm for safe aura recovery. The level limits can be changed (3x level? 5x?) if they give insufficient uses.


Yes, XP pockets are also bad. What about multiplying all XP gain with exp(constant1*min(0, (time between spotting the monster and killing it) - constant2)) with relatively small constant1 and large constant2 ? This would weaken XP pocket creation (elemental evokales and draining status and temporary mutation removal already reward XP pockets) and going back to kill ghosts/uniques after clearing a few levels.


So coming back the XP pocket issue - isn't this effectively present for most other gods in the forms of piety pockets anyway? I mean, for Sif, piety and XP are nearly the same (granted, her only ability with a piety cost is amnesia), and for any god that requires killing it's pretty close. Giving this god abilities that charge with XP wouldn't encourage leaving XP pockets any more than Trog, Makhleb, or Lugonu encourage leaving piety pockets, and I've never heard of anyone doing that or complaining that the ability to do that is a design flaw. The closest I've ever heard of to people doing anything remotely resembling XP pockets, even in cases that allow it, is people who start as a non-good god saving Crypts for TSO or Zin piety after converting for the post-game, which is a much less scummy/tedious behavior than leaving squads of orcs all over the place for XP on demand.

If XP pockets are a concern for XP recharging abilities, then piety pockets for Trog/Lugonu/Makh should be too. Those don't seem to concern anyone, so I don't see why we should be hesitant to have god abilities that recharge on XP. The only reason the issue comes up at all is because this god's special piety mechanics prevent the existence of piety costs on abilities, and XP costs are basically a way to get the exact same functionality with a fixed piety meter.

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Post Tuesday, 8th April 2014, 20:52

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Here are some differences between piety cost and xp-recharge
1) Piety builds up even if you have not yet used abilities which cost piety. xp recharging, by definition, does not. So killing orcs in orc still helps you use abilities later, whereas killing orcs in orc while your xp-rechargable ability is not on cooldown does not help you use it more later.

If you change to making it work like piety then I would suggest just calling it piety (most piety is connected to xp in some fashion, after all), except that this god would then have two different measures of "piety" and I hope you can see how complicating things like that is not desirable.

(This problem does exist with the elemental evokers ... I am unsure I like xp recharging as a mechanic in general, but that is for another topic)

2) A large majority of piety-costing abilities don't actually have a meaningful piety cost, especially in a short-term view. After I reach lair I have only in one game (my FeHe) cared about the piety cost of Elyvilon's abilities that are not life-saving. I have never cared about the piety cost of Makhleb's abilities (any of them). I have never really cared about the piety cost of slimify, nor cure bad mutation. In practice what piety costs do is act only to prevent using said abilities against literally every single enemy. They do nothing to prevent using abilities against dangerous enemies. A large majority of players underutilise god abilities, and I probably fall into that category myself.

(You can (and I would) argue that this system is not well-designed, but again that is for another topic.)

(One notable exception: Trog's Brothers-in-arms actually has a noticeable piety cost. There are other abilities where piety cost matters in practice instead of just in theory. They are not very numerous.)

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Post Tuesday, 8th April 2014, 21:20

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Just an idea for sacrifices, but sacrifice resistance (10 piety, possibly more or less depending on which resistance is chosen.) It'd just give you a racial minus to a random resistance. Piety would have to vary, as rHoly is much less valuable than rF.

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Post Wednesday, 9th April 2014, 15:19

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

no one would ever use that, except if they are swimming in resistances, with at least 2 sources of each, and maybe no even then.
having rFoo- is very, very dangerous.
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Post Wednesday, 9th April 2014, 17:27

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

See viewtopic.php?f=17&t=11718 if you really want to go into detail on how hypothetical negative resistances that don't currently exist might work.

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Post Wednesday, 9th April 2014, 18:15

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

Sorry.
On a more related note, one thing about Iashol's sacrifices: I think sacrifices should be made different from those other gods would have you make. For example, sacrificing stealth is comparable to TSO's ban against stabbing, and sacrificing arcana is comparable to the good gods and Dithmentos the Freshmaker banning various spell schools. Most of the proposed sacrifices don't step on other gods' toes, but I figured it was worth bringing up.

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Post Wednesday, 9th April 2014, 18:38

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

crate wrote:(One notable exception: Trog's Brothers-in-arms actually has a noticeable piety cost. There are other abilities where piety cost matters in practice instead of just in theory. They are not very numerous.)

While more examples might not be extremely important to this thread, I'd say that Chei's latter abilities slouch and step from time both have significant and well costed piety costs. Slouching 3 times to clear a fight will drop you down a *, and I've had games where in the earlier parts of the game (lair) I was struggling to build up piety because I kept getting into fights I wasn't yet ahead of the power curve for, and so I leaned on Chei heavily.

I've always resented heroism for this reason as well, it costs far too little that it becomes tedious to use so frequently, and I tend to resist using it unless it's a really bad fight. IMHO more god abilities should have a cost similar to brothers in arms, slouch, etc.

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Post Wednesday, 9th April 2014, 20:38

Re: Proposal: Iashol, God of balance and sacrifice

khalil wrote:sacrificing stealth is comparable to TSO's ban against stabbing, and sacrificing arcana is comparable to the good gods and Dithmentos the Freshmaker banning various spell schools.


I've thought about this, and I disagree on two levels. First, I don't think it's necessary to avoid any similarity to existing gods, and my basis for thinking so is that several gods already overlap in some ways.

More specifically, banning stabbing and banning stealth are not very similar. You can still stab if you choose Sacrifice Stealth, but you will always need to use hexes/tools/distraction to do it, and you'll need to train SB to do it well. Conversely, TSO's conduct never allows stabbing, but can allow you to go unnoticed, even with his halo.

For spell schools, multiple other gods ban a specific spell school or certain specific spells, but this god can ban schools no other god does, and it implements it in a different way.


On another topic, another possible replacement of Aura of Power: When you kill a living or demonic monster, you have a piety in 300 chance to spawn a "freed spirit" monster, sort of in the vein of Death Channel, but most likely less directly referential to the monster's base stats. I'm not sure how the freed spirit monsters would work, but I'm leaning towards stationary w/ either very-low-damage AOE irresistible attack affecting all enemies or ranged single-target attack and a light buff on all friendlies, perhaps a vampiric attack that heals all friendlies instead of just the attacker.

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