Random gods


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Snake Sneak

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Post Monday, 12th September 2011, 17:06

Random gods

I want to discuss possible implementaions of random gods

I'll start with possible piety gain and later will write some ideas for conduct and abilities

I think there are 3 interesting piety sources for random gods:

1) killings
2) item sacrifices
3) training skill(s)

1)
Minor god may hate some races\creatures and we may create flavor texts like - "hundreds years ago, an ogre destroyed a temple of XXX god and he wants to see the whole race dead "
Also piety may be given for the method of killings ( by weapon type, spell school, wand, stabbed)
2) Same as for items, some gods may like wands, some scrolls, some food, some spellbooks it may be even as specific as swords or non-direct damage wands
3) I think every skill except invocations may be liked by god

I think that random gods should have several small piety sources like - God A likes killing elves, snakes, potion sacrifices and air magic training and God B likes killing orcs, trolls, weapon and wand sacrifices... It's only examples, not a balanced proposals
To not make some gods with many good source piety sources and some gods with few bad piety sources every possible piety source should have value and sum of their values should be nearly same for every god
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Post Monday, 12th September 2011, 18:52

Re: Random gods

Strongpoint wrote:Also piety may be given for the method of killings ( by weapon type, spell school, wand, stabbed)

This isn't good. You can always switch weapon or change spell for the killing blow which is uninteresting and annoying. You'll notice that none of the current gods care for how you kill monsters.
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Post Monday, 12th September 2011, 21:00

Re: Random gods

Piety rules are great for diversifying gods. Strongpoint's list is a good start, but galehar is right. Killing by method is not a good idea. Since I thought about demigods for a bit, I'll share some piety ideas:

* Piety for killing: Can be broad classes (the living, or demons, etc.). There could be enmity to special monsters (e.g. small ones, or flying ones, or intelligent ones etc. -- something like "dragons" might sounds like an interesting class, but probably is too special already).
* Piety for sacrifices: If used on corpses, it is almost like piety for killing, but thematically a little different. Interesting for a random god would be piety for sacrificing an item type, e.g. potions -- in this case I would immediately follow up with a rule that bans potion use for that god. Other things to sacrifice are gold (don't ask, just take 9/10 of the gold collected), or dungeon features (fountains, staircases, traps). Another type is piety gain from eating a selected monster set (this is slightly scummable, but okay for a random god).
* Piety for exploration. Not exciting, but can always be used if conduct (which might be best rolled first) does not fit well with other piety rules.
* Piety for skill training is inelegant, but would be acceptable for a random god.
* Piety for being a form (one power would be to fix the form, a required passive power would be a boost to weaker forms).

I think that with random gods we should not try to generate gods which are round and balanced and strong like the current gods. Rather, random gods should be powerful in at least one direction, sufficiently thematic to hold together and different. What they will inevitably lack in polish and coherence should be compensated for by wackiness. Once I have time, I'll illustrate this with some examples of what I think are realistic and acceptable random gods.

This means that we should be drastic, not timid. At most two piety gains (conduct may add/subtract a bit from that, but not much), simple (to understand) powers etc.
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 11:08

Re: Random gods

I like the idea.

Should be their names also randomized ? Thematic-wise these gods could be form part of a plethora of minor deities, each one with her particular whims. A name for all them is requested and therefore, a single description suitable to encompass all them.

Examples are found in many cultures around the world: kami in Shintoism, daimon in ancient Greece. In many religions heroes, saints, bodhisattvas, inmortals and buddhas are revered as intercessors to a principal god.
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Snake Sneak

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 14:37

Re: Random gods

I think I missed an important design question in the first post... How many random elements should random gods have? 5? 10? 15? 27? It's the most important design decision and everything else depends on it.

As far as i know Demonspawns get 5-8 facets at CL 27 and IMO they are random enough, is it good number for random gods or we need more?

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 14:53

Re: Random gods

A variation, at least for online play : Random god can be based on the last winning demigod !
- Gift can be chosen from used equipment. Not final ones, but items used during the game (to prevent abuse from winning demigod going out naked).
- Invoctation may grant stat/skill bonus based on demigod's ones. Or favorite spells
- Piety gain can be based on Sif Muna way, when raising skills that your god used

This will add a mini game about what was your god gameplay and trying to match it

The god would be mostly like Okawaru (small generic buff and lot of different gifts, but not always melee oriented), but with a bigger flavour and a big random part depeding on the matching between your god and your race.

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 17:07

Re: Random gods

Roderic: Random names, sure. I'd like it best if the gods were as random as possible, even if this amounts to sentences in the description like "Alaurgl likes the killing of demons. The deity hates all fluids and thus forbids the use potions and expects the followers to sacrifice all potions. Pious worshipers can expect to send great balls of destruction upon their enemies. They can also heal others and themselves." (You see: one piety rule, another piety rule coming with conduct (since the first piety rule is too minor to be useful for a whole game), and two powers.)
The other option would be to invent a large number of minor gods, a bit like uniques, but then we'd be expected to make sure they're balanced, and come up regularly. (You can see this very well with the current niche gods Beogh, Jiyva, Lugonu already: there are complaints because altars are not guaranteed or too deep.) We avoid these issues by having the gods be too random to be expected. Also, there would be some appeal in knowing that you have the *only* chance ever to worship this god :)

Strongpoint: I wouldn't phrase it like this, asking for the number of random elements. To me, making a god consists of providing piety rules (gain and loss), perhaps a conduct, powers (active and passive), and wrath. We could (and should!) just provide long lists of options for each of these, but the art comes when we decide which piety rule clashes with what powers, or what set of powers makes a strong enough god etc. The god should be somewhat consistent and useful.

Danakh: That's part of the plan, yes. Atheist winners (so including all Demigod) winners have a chance to create a god (dubbed "player god"), chance increasing with performance (score). When determining theme from the winning DG, skills should be accounted for, and perhaps conduct. I'd say that spells and items should be mostly or even completely ignored.
I don't think that players would win naked, by the way. Wouldn't you be proud if someone wins worshiping *your* demigod?
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 17:46

Re: Random gods

You could just assign a weight to all of the piety gain, piety loss, and powers.

Gain <= 10
Loss == Gain
Powers <= 8

Or something... A generic list could look like this:

--Gain/Loss--
Kill Demons +/- 4
Over Time +/- 2
Kill Living +/- 6
Sacrifice Corpse + 5
Corpse Rot - 5

--Powers--
Resistance +1
Haste +4
Recall +2

And so on... I think that would make it easier to balance everything. If Random God powers are too strong overall then lower the target weight. If a specific piety rule is to weak then lower the rule weight.

By making the Gain/Loss lists identical (maybe a select few on either side that don't match up) it is easy to prevent conflicts. A few things might require a pair on one list or the other (Piety loss for eating Meat/Fruit). You could then end up with a god that loves it when you kill absolutely anything and hates it when you cast spells, eat fruit, and drink potions.
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 17:51

Re: Random gods

bobross: Absolutely, that's the way to achieve a semblance of balance. In my opinion, a good way to actually go the full way is this:

1. Brainstorm piety rules. (Already underway!)
2. Brainstorm passive and active powers.
3. Brainstorm conducts. Note that a conduct will often imply a piety rule and/or a power, that is why it comes afterwards.
4. Brainstorm wrath effects (these can be more generic).
5. Assign weights.
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 18:00

Re: Random gods

Will this new set of gods have only one random representative per game or how many?

Altar tiles should have only generic altar to indicate it as one of this minor deities. Some kind of altar with an statue or icon would work. Or even a set of them, with several distinctive topics and linked to some of the generated characteristics (but I think is complicated to figure out how many)
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 18:36

Re: Random gods

Roderic: This is completely up to us. Let's face it: you'll very rarely take a random god over one from the Temple. It is completely okay if random gods are only for the more curious and/or better players. They should be really rare, I'd say, to make them more standout. For a start, I would suggest less than one random god altar per game. There's no reason why there couldn't be two random gods in a given game, it'd just be even rarer :)

A few generic altar tiles would do, yes.

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 19:26

Re: Random gods

dpeg wrote:bobross: Absolutely, that's the way to achieve a semblance of balance. In my opinion, a good way to actually go the full way is this:

1. Brainstorm piety rules. (Already underway!)
2. Brainstorm passive and active powers.
3. Brainstorm conducts. Note that a conduct will often imply a piety rule and/or a power, that is why it comes afterwards.
4. Brainstorm wrath effects (these can be more generic).
5. Assign weights.


Piety rules ideas:
- A while back, I was tossing around the idea of a god who encourages asceticism -- you gain piety faster the less you're carrying. I was never sure whether it would be best to implement this by total inventory weight, total inventory slots used, or total items. I never really fleshed it out enough to where I was comfortable posting it as a suggestion for a Real God but as a random god piety idea it might work.
- Putting monsters to sleep, and spending time around sleeping monsters without waking them.
- Rejection of the flesh: Spending time with low health, spending time with physical status ailments (poison, sickness, rot, etc.), spending time at Hungry or worse, and getting mutations, preferably bad ones.
- Advancing the corrosion and decay of the material world by allowing items to become corroded or destroyed, and using up the last charge in a wand. Would depreciate using scrolls of enchant X and recharging, as well as items that grant preservation or conservation.
- Fasting. ("Rejection of the flesh" lite.)
- Using as few armor slots as possible. (God wants you to run around naked!)
- Killing things in water (including making them drown with confusion).
- Using things that you haven't ID'ed, especially weapons and armors.
- I had an idea for a god of the gladiatorial arena, whose focus was not just on killing but on making a spectacular show of doing so. The only piety idea I could come up with, though, was killing monsters with as many witnesses as possible. (At least it'd get people out of the hallways...)

Powers (i.e. just a bunch of weird crap I thought up):
- Blasts of acid that corrode weapons and cause bleeding.
- Various themed summons (like insects).
- Putting monsters to sleep.
- Temporary flight.
- "Cocoon": for a few turns, gain incredible AC, MR, and fast regeneration, but you can't do anything but rest.
- Create conflict a la Nethack, i.e., every monster in sight goes neutral. (Should be rare, of course, with heavy conducts to make up for it.)
- Contagion: inflicts poison on a nearby monster but it spreads to other monsters the infected monster moves adjacent to (like how sticky flame catches between sheep, which by the way is hilarious and should never be removed.)
- Gourmand (passive).
- Monsters will forget about you as soon as you leave their LoS (passive). (I suggested a Hex like this on the devwiki but I think it could work better here.)
- Chance that using a wand will not use up a charge, increasing with piety (passive).
- Reduced chance of ammunition mulching, decreasing even more with piety (passive).

Roderic wrote:Should be their names also randomized ? Thematic-wise these gods could be form part of a plethora of minor deities, each one with her particular whims. A name for all them is requested and therefore, a single description suitable to encompass all them.


I like Terry Pratchett's "small gods", minor wisps of deific essence in search of believers. Perhaps sometime in the future, Crawl's random gods will gain a more powerful and coherent belief system as they attain worshippers, who mold belief in that god with their expectations of divinity. But, for now, they've just cobbled together a few ideas they've heard of, and a few powers they have, in the hopes that somebody, anybody, will come by and believe in them...

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 19:51

Re: Random gods

nicolae: Some really good ideas, many thanks!

Piety:
- Carrying little is great (the god would announce being (un)happiness clearly), best way seems to be inventory slots as that hurts everyone equally. And since you don't want to count items in the inventory all the time, the god does it for you: -5 items for every piety star or so. Cannot pick up without abandoning.
- Putting monsters to sleep might encourage tedious gameplay (and of course, we don't want that with our random gods). But killing completely unaware opponents (stabs, spells) would work well.
- The other ideas are also a bit prone to player self-abuse but appreciating kills with an audience is probably good to go. (Of course, the audience matters: rats amount little, draconians amount for a lot. Even more if they can touch you, presumably.)

The powers are good. We'd need a lot more, but this is a great start. Some more ideas:
- Turn all monsters into [foo].
- Give randart weapon upon start of worship (type, ego, name are mentioned, nothing else) - I think in general beckoning would be good for random gods.
- Passive mapping. (No reason to shy away from stealing from other gods.)
- Infravision.
- Turn [disliked monster type] into explosion (active).
- Spend all nutrition from Satiated to Almost Starving, make all eating monsters in LOS pass out.

People keep referring to Pratchett's small gods... :) I didn't read this book, but I agree with your last sentence.

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 20:04

Re: Random gods

What about racially-focused gods?
We have Beogh who loves orcs, but is there a focused elven, dwarven or other (or spriggan!) deity?
A random god who gives the character a bonus (maybe simply 1.25x piety) for just being a particular race?

Or even in the reverse, a 0.75x piety for being a particular disliked, but not discouraged, race, especially if the god gives good bonuses.
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 20:05

Re: Random gods

Just a random idea ... how would it work if the god's facets actually changed regularly. Say every x amount of piety earned, they lose one facet and gain a new one ... or even completely reroll the god?

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 20:09

Re: Random gods

mumra wrote:Just a random idea ... how would it work if the god's facets actually changed regularly. Say every x amount of piety earned, they lose one facet and gain a new one ... or even completely reroll the god?


So something like... Xom?

Maybe it could be a rare aspect to random gods, just to mix it up a little. "You feel that this particular small god has not settled on a belief structure yet, and its gifts and demands may change over time." But I feel like most random gods should be predictable, if minor.

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 20:10

Re: Random gods

XuaXua: I am not sure if that is so interesting. Of course, if the god has a conduct of hating small beings (say), then Spriggans should be out and Kobolds etc. handicapped. But just on its own, I believe racial stuff is a bit mundane. Also, you'd expect that Elves (say) would do better than with a random god :)

mumra: similarly, I am not sure. Would you take a god where powers are unclear? It will be very hard to make players worship random gods even if they're strong and reliable... if you make them unstable, their appeal will decrease further, I am afraid. You could probably do something like "[god] will allow worshipers to hurl blasts of elemental magic, the specific type changing according to the deity's whim." But that's a really precise and describable type of randomness.

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 20:49

Re: Random gods

Beogh likes orcs, jet, and towercap. He smited a worshiper lately. He needs to receive prayers to get through the working day. He was disgusted by a demon lately. If you worship him you will become strong and agile, but become winded quickly.
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 21:12

Re: Random gods

@dpeg - You mentioned wanting the randoms to be rare, but what about having a guaranteed random god altar on D:1. That way a player has the choice of either rolling the dice with a random god and getting a head start on piety building or they can hold off and wait for Temple. I doubt many players would want to deal with god wrath on D:10 or so and the god would have to be the bee's knees to usurp TSO for post-endgame.
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Snake Sneak

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 21:34

Re: Random gods

I think that sort of thing would encourage startscumming, which is never a good thing.

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 21:36

Re: Random gods

bobross: Startscumming! Unfortunately, your prospoal is inacceptable because we have to prevent (certain) players from startscumming. (Please don't discuss startscumming here, this thread should be about actual ideas for random gods; already Noob's comment is off topic. We have long agreed that the usual "But they don't have to do it!" does not cut it for us, we will try to make startscumming as irrelevant as possible.)

With all of that, I think it is really good if random gods are rare. This makes the decision, or just imagination, of taking on more interesting, let alone actual wins.

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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 21:40

Re: Random gods

dpeg wrote:but appreciating kills with an audience is probably good to go. (Of course, the audience matters: rats amount little, draconians amount for a lot. Even more if they can touch you, presumably.)


It could come bundled with a thematic low-level power to issue a divine challenge -- waking up everybody on the level and telling them where you are. For other gods this would be suicide, but for the followers of this god, it's a chance to walk into glorious battle in the (random) name of your deity, by striding into a big open area and challenging the denizens of the dungeon to Bring It. (Of course you take a big piety hit, or even penance, if you issue a challenge and then don't fight anybody.)

Piety ideas:
- Spending time at Full hunger or more.
- Spending gold in shops.
- A random god who appreciates it when your allies kill some type of creature, but not when you do. Would have to be tied in with summon gifts and the like.
- Gaining piety faster depending on how many items of a certain type, like jewelry or spellbooks, you're carrying. A god of hoarding. (Spellbooks might work best.)
- Killing uniques.
- Killing deities. This is really only possible with Jiyva, at the moment, and I know some devs don't like the mechanic anyway. But I feel like somebody should appreciate it when you kill a whole god.

More powers, because it's fun:
- Mesmerize, which keeps monsters from moving away from you while it's active.
- Tentacle arms, aka "Form of the Kraken": While in this form, your hands turn into strong, massive tentacles you can batter your foes with. You lose arm and hand slots but you gain two friendly tentacles anchored to your body, 2 or 3 segments long.
- All monsters in LoS take damage based on their weight, with more damage if they're larger or carrying heavy things in their inventory. Flying and levitating monsters slam into the ground, and may drown or burn in lava if they're flying over it.
- Once per shop, your god will convince the shop owner to violate Shopkeeper Guild rules and buy a thing from you, but you can't buy it back, and shopkeepers won't buy things they wouldn't sell.
- Various useful spells as powers, like various bolts, Tornado, Translocations, and so on.
- Shopping discounts (passive).
- You can't go below 1 HP from being poisoned or rotting, and your stats can't go below 3 from sickness and statrot (passive).
- Repel or deflect missiles (passive).
- Food gifts (passive).
- HP, MP, or satiation upon killing (passive).
Last edited by nicolae on Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 01:35, edited 1 time in total.
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 22:21

Re: Random gods

@ dpeg - No worries, was just an idea and never even considered startscumming implications.

@nicolae - I love Mesmerize, Bring It, and Satiation for kills :)

Bring it + Mesmerize would be epic lol
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Post Tuesday, 13th September 2011, 23:02

Re: Random gods

bobross419 wrote:@ dpeg - No worries, was just an idea and never even considered startscumming implications.

@nicolae - I love Mesmerize, Bring It, and Satiation for kills :)

Bring it + Mesmerize would be epic lol


I feel like satiation for kills would need to be balanced by having conducts that restrict or forbid spellcasting.

Then again, it is just a random god, so maybe these balance issues aren't so important. :D

Other power ideas:
- Flood. Select a water tile in LoS. All tiles within radius 2 or 3 of that tile become inundated with an additional layer of water (dry -> shallow, shallow -> deep). Floor tiles which were not adjacent to any water beforehand will not flood. This power will not prevent you from drowning yourself, though you do get a warning.
- Mitigates or removes the antitraining penalty for opposed elements (passive).
- Crosstraining. The god will support a pair of related (either by theme or by playstyle) skills that don't normally crosstrain, and allow you to crosstrain them. Armour and Dodging, Stabbing and Stealth, Conjurations and Fire, Necromancy and Poison, Bows and Hexes, and so on. "This god helps you learn skills related to [defending yourself/killing enemies unaware/the destructive power of flames/death and sickness/arcane marksmanship] more easily." (passive)
- "This god will claim your soul upon death." - You leave no ghost if you die in the service of this god. Kind of meta, though, and it should be added as a minor supplementary boon and not one of the god's main benefits (passive).
- Allows you to use any projectile type with any wielded launcher as if it were that launcher's usual type of ammo -- doesn't include bare-hand throwing but does include blowguns. Fitting a large rock into a blowgun, or a javelin into a sling, is left as an exercise for the deity (passive).

Edit: Conducts! Of varying severity, with some ideas for powers and piety gains to be included with them. Conducts with no associated power or mechanic for piety gain can be balanced with a random minor useful power, perhaps.
Steal a bunch from the other gods, first:
- No cannibalism.
- No eating intelligent monsters.
- No desecrating [foo] corpses (with piety for "consecrating" [foo] corpses).
- No attacking allies.
- No allowing allies to die.
- No using [spell school].
- No using [foo] brand weapons (with piety for sacrificing said items).
- No causing mutations deliberately (with piety for sacrificing mutagenic items).
- No "sneak-attacking" monsters dishonorably (i.e. TSO's conduct).
- No attacking [foo] monsters (with [foo] monsters peaceful until attacked).
- No using poison.

- No using potions/scrolls/wands/spellbooks/evocable items, with piety for sacrificing those items.
- No eating meat (chunks, permameat, blood), with piety for sacrificing potions of blood and permameat.
- No eating non-meat, with piety for sacrificing bread, fruit, potions of porridge, and potions of water.
- No use of a certain body slot, with piety for sacrificing items that go in that slot. Forbidding body armor might be too much, but forbidding gloves, boots/bardings, helms, offhand items (shields and two-hand weapons), or amulets might be interesting.
- No eating when you're satiated or better.
- No eating when you're hungry or better.
- No eating at all, combined with plenty of satiation for kills.
- No shopping.
- No dropping items. (For a more severe conduct, the god will consume everything you drop so you can't pick it up later after dealing with penance and earning your piety back.)
- No using weapons/armor/ammunition with negative enchantments, with the passive power of IDing enchantments on pickup/sight.
- No using weapons/armor/ammunition with non-positive enchantments, with passive enchantment ID. Also, upon joining the god, all +0 armor you're wearing and +0 ammo you have quivered gets enchanted to +1, and +0, +0 weapons you wield get enchanted to either +1, +0 or +0, +1. (This would be this god's enticement to new followers.) Enchant weapon and enchant armor scrolls will allow you to select any of those items in your inventory.
- No teleporting, blinking, or banishing yourself or others, with piety for sacrificing teleport items (scrolls, rings, spellbooks containing Translocations spells, missiles of dispersal, weapons of distortion, etc.) Also enjoys the killing and sacrifice of blink frogs and beings that use teleport spells.
- No walking on the altars of other gods. (Or next to them, but that might complicate some vaults, perhaps.)
- No using a certain type of weapon, either by weapon skill or by damage type. (Forbidding the use of weapons that can spill blood, such as blades and swords, was a common medieval thing for priests and inquisitors, I understand.)
- No alteration of the dungeon -- no digging, Shatter, making pools of water, etc.
- No dying. (An absolutely meaningless conduct for everybody except Felids...)
- No entering portal vaults.
- No killing things yourself. (Combine with a piety for ally kills rule, and some good summon powers.)
- No using regular staircases except to go into another branch -- you have to use escape hatches and therefore can't control where you end up in the level you're going to. Comes with a power to turn regular in-branch staircases into hatches.

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Post Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 15:01

Re: Random gods

This topic is getting a lot of content, a great thing to witness. At some point, it will be necessary to use a wiki page for maintaining and discussing ideas. So here it is: https://crawl.develz.org/wiki/doku.php?id=dcss:brainstorm:god:random_god

That page is empty but it does refer to this thread. I am trying to avoid loss of ideas this way, which happened with the hell effects thread, for example.
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Post Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 19:18

Re: Random gods

Brainstorming...

Likes:
+ exploring/fighting in/on/above water
+ causing fire damage
+ poisoning monsters
+ stabbing creatures
+ sacrificing artefacts
+ silence (all powers are silent)
+ noise
+ killing creatures from a distance
+ sacrificing ranged weapons
+ sacrificing permafood
+ killing humanoid monsters
+ killing animals
+ killing shapeless monsters
+ killing aquatic/flying creatures
+ killing unique monsters
+ killing small/large monsters
+ killing insects/arachnids/snakes
+ killing things faster/slower than you


Dislikes:
- spending time in water (including rain)
- burning things or creatures
- all forms of translocations (incl. by scroll or evocation)
- use of stimulants (haste, might, berserk)
- covering your head/hands/feet
- wearing jewellery
- shape shifting
- gambling (use of unidentified items, power to identify stuff)
- messing with monsters' minds (confusion, enslavement)
- using sticks (all items subject to StS, plus wands)
- loud noises
- attacking monsters from a distance
- use of items handled by a monster/the enemy
- damage spells
- dawdling (spending more than X turns on a level)
- fighting with a wielded weapon


Powers:
* missiles harmlessly pass through you (passive)
* passwall
* controlled blink
* temporarily brand your hands with some kind of ego
* steal equipment from monsters
* gate yourself to another branch entrance
* detect secret doors, see through closed doors
* boost skill X (passive)
* multiply equipped items' enchantments and resistances by (1+x) (passive)
* a special transformation (oklob form, wolf form, ...)
* all status effects last longer (passive)
* grant bonus resistance X (passive)
* polymorph monsters
* remove mutations
* increase mana reservoir (passive or active)
* make spells more difficult, yet more powerful (passive)
* boost spells of one type, while hindering another (like rings of fire/ice without the resistance, passive)
* invisibility (passive or active)
* reduced los (passive)
* create lava
* exchange a floor and wall (or non-floor) square in los
* drop a wall on a selected adjacent square (does crushing damage, destroys killed monsters' equipment)
* rewards (item gifts) for winning timed challenges (passive)
* boost stat X (passive, including SH/AC/EV)
* detect stairs/gates in range X
Please report bugs to Crawl's bug tracker, and leave feedback on the development wiki. Thank you!

For this message the author jpeg has received thanks:
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Post Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 19:37

Re: Random gods

I'll add a list, too. When collecting the stuff on the wiki page, we should probably also grade all the items by coding effort. I believe that we can assemble interesting random gods already from the coding-light properties. This should not stop us from uttering all ideas we have, it's just to make it easier for random gods to go into the game.

Apart from grade, each item shoud get a weight, as discussed above, to measure roughly how useful a piety gain rule is, how much a conduct hurts, how strong an ability is. Also, every item should get a single sentence description. In the god's text, we would print all those sentences, perhaps skipping one or two with lowest weight (the long text would have all).

Power:
- Tomb of Dorokhloe for self. (card effect)
- Tomb for monster. (Zin's imprison effect)
- Steal from shop (one item per shop).
- Swap position with monster. (may fail)
- Swap position with friendly monster. (always works)
- Generate a number of spores at vicinity of LOS.

Dislike:
- learning spells from [foo] school(s)
- altars (create travel exclusion around them, piety loss when in sight of one), not the own one, of course
- allies
- artefacts (implications: can sacrifice artefacts, penance for using one, boost mundane weapons/armour)

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Post Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 22:30

Re: Random gods

nicolae: Didn't you edit the wiki page??

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Post Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 22:56

Re: Random gods

dpeg wrote:nicolae: Didn't you edit the wiki page??


I was working on it, but I was having trouble finding a layout for the tons of info and ideas, and I didn't want to just dump a bunch of unformatted crap onto the wiki page, so I figured I'd come back to it later once I'd had more time to think about it.

I hadn't realized anyone had noticed I was editing it!

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Post Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 23:06

Re: Random gods

nicolae: I am relieved I didn't delete any of your work.

I added some piety rules. If you want, you can use that as a template (I won't add anything for now). Note that I skipped a number of proposals from this thread. This was on purpose, feel free to add missing ideas you like (but you could also try to find out why I skipped them :) )

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Post Wednesday, 14th September 2011, 23:28

Re: Random gods

dpeg wrote:nicolae: I am relieved I didn't delete any of your work.

I added some piety rules. If you want, you can use that as a template (I won't add anything for now). Note that I skipped a number of proposals from this thread. This was on purpose, feel free to add missing ideas you like (but you could also try to find out why I skipped them :) )


I think you got most of the really general piety rules from the thread, though you have killing uniques listed as a major and a minor piety gain.

I'll use your template and start writing up god powers, I'll try to focus on the ones that would be simpler to code.

Also, I know this is putting the cart about fifty miles before the horse, but would it be reasonable to include a background that starts with a random god? Sort of a divine version of a Wanderer, and it would let players try out a feature they'd otherwise rarely see.

Edit: I updated the powers list on the devwiki. I didn't get all of the suggestions from this thread, some of them seemed like they'd be a pain to code and also my eyes starting glazing over towards the end there. I think I'll reread this thread in a bit, and then go back and add a few more, but if anyone wants to make any changes feel free.

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Post Thursday, 15th September 2011, 02:54

Re: Random gods

It sounds like RNG god would be the most fun to play!

A thought that crossed my mind, not of particular value: Another DeWz got the Orb and thusly ascended to GodHood, and therefore doesn't like you eating elf corpses. Based on one of the above ideas. Ascended players are now RNG gods.
Except Undeads, who used the power of the Orb to return to life. Unless having unliving unfeeling dead flesh was fun (Twilight) then they didn't. But whatever -ramble
Someone else probably thought of this but the thread was so TL:DR so sorree

Fixed name: Arengee. Epic lols.

And now for serious: Why not make Xom do this, different each game? He can be such a jerk sometimes... The only thing that I like about him is possible good effects for wrath :D
He comes off childish to me - I imagine the other gods give him a time out. Randomizing his powers and attitude/flavour would be a plus in this crawler's opinion.
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Post Thursday, 15th September 2011, 04:32

Re: Random gods

Gives piety for worshipping then abandoning other gods. :)
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Post Thursday, 15th September 2011, 07:02

Re: Random gods

nicolae: Starting with a random god leads to startscumming. *Perhaps* Wanderers could sometimes follow a random god, those are already startscum material. And I did fix the uniques :) Many thanks for listing the powers.

Zzz: That's a natural idea: winning atheists (so all Demigods, but also some other winners who never followed a god) can create what is called 'player gods' (random gods modelled after the winning character, using skills etc.) However, random gods alone are a huge project. Once we have them in the game (and we're a very far from that) we can brainstorm player gods.
Xom is meant to be something different than a random god. Xom will slowly be changed to do more, and more good stuff, during tension. It should be a chaotic god with whims, not a god re-rolled each game. Also as I said before, no guaranteed random god altars, especially not in the early game.
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Post Thursday, 15th September 2011, 19:29

Re: Random gods

I'm afraid this takes too much effort and time to be rarely used or seen...

The list of available powers/conducts should also include those of the known gods as well -perhaps renamed- , isn't it ?
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Post Thursday, 15th September 2011, 19:42

Re: Random gods

I don't like how it develops... Looks like random gods may become draconian way random with 1 piety source, few tied to it abilities, linked conduct and wrath...

I hoped that gods will be more like demonspawn random, when you'll see same elements mixed in different combinations

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Post Thursday, 15th September 2011, 20:14

Re: Random gods

Roderic wrote:I'm afraid this takes too much effort and time to be rarely used or seen...


Honestly I agree... as it is, it seems like it'd be a lot of work for a feature that a lot of players would rarely see, much less want to use. Especially if random gods only appear after the Temple, since most players who get to the Temple are probably going to figure it'd be better just to grab a known god, rather than wait a few levels to see about the off chance of finding a god who hates potions and lets you fly. Either the probability would need to get bumped up, or random gods would have to be built in such a way that most of them are really good, worth dropping or ignoring known gods for.

The list of available powers/conducts should also include those of the known gods as well -perhaps renamed- , isn't it ?


A few of the suggested powers and conducts were taken from existing gods, and we could probably steal some more powers, though I'm not sure if we should steal known gods' "signature" powers.

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Post Friday, 16th September 2011, 08:56

Re: Random gods

I don't share these concerns. Effort is an issue, but if we have fun inventing the details, someone might have fun setting up a barebones version of the concept.

Strongpoint: Part of the proposal is precisely to make sure that powers are strong, and piety can be generated sufficiently easy. As I said, we should rather on the generous side, since players have no compass for the random gods.

The random gods altars should not come late, they should be rare. In fact, I am about to add two new conducts ("elf lover", "orc lover") where the altars have to appear earlier than the respective branch entries.

Mory flexibility, fantasy and enthusiasm, folks! (I love the idea so much that I'll keep adding to the wiki on my own, even if it is never realised. But of course it's more fun if others participate. Thanks to nicolae and everyone else who added to the wiki.)

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Post Friday, 16th September 2011, 14:03

Re: Random gods

Dpeg, my concern is not god's power... I'll be happy if random gods are weaker than standard, I love to play Xom and IMO he is worse than no god

But I do have worries that there are will be a set of underdeveloped gods, not truly random gods

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Post Friday, 16th September 2011, 14:42

Re: Random gods

Strongpoint: Did you see the most recent wiki page? I believe the gods will be good. Of course they're random. They may ask you to throw away all bottles and get a battle blast effect in return -- but isn't this exactly what we wanted?

I have just added a simple method to make the gods a little more coherent (at the very end).
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Post Friday, 16th September 2011, 16:50

Re: Random gods

@Strongpoint: I have trouble following your reaction. The proposals currently collected on the wiki sound a lot like the ones in your original post, except that the piety sources overall appear more reliable. The way I see it, if we want players to occasionally pick a random god over all of the normal ones, they have to be attractive.

@dpeg: In your opinion, what should be the probabilities for encountering an altar to a random god on the first nine levels (where all the other overflow altars appear as well)? When you say "rare", I think of 2%, but you might be thinking 20 or even 40%. I do agree that not every game needs to feature a random god, but that the chance of meeting one while it still matters should be fairly substantial. To throw some numbers into the ring, I'm thinking of a 30% chance for an altar appearing anywhere on levels D:2-9, otherwise a 20% chance for levels D:10-27, and finally a 20% chance of appearing on a random level in one of the branches that may feature altars, resulting in an overall 70% probability of finding an altar, plus the normal (low) chance of an (additional) altar appearing randomly anywhere in the Dungeon. Code-wise, it's probably much easier if there only ever may be one random god per game, though you might encounter several of its altars.

As for Wanderers, I'm in two minds. On the one hand, the randomness does fit the background perfectly. On the other hand, the benefits of startscumming a starting god are tremendous even when compared to random skills and starting equipment. Things actually get worse if the chance of getting a random starting god is good but less than 100%.
Thus, I propose to let players _choose a starting god_ for Wanderers. In the secondary Wanderer menu (after the species has been chosen), the player is offered 3 random gods (with a short description for each of them) plus the option to play an atheist or to reroll the choices. The offered gods respect the species choice in-so-much that, for example, as a Spriggan none of the gods will mind small species joining. Similarly, when rolling the Wanderer's skills and equipment, the religious restrictions are taken into account, so that you won't start with Summoning trained or a crossbow if your god hates the idea of allies and ranged combat, respectively. Obviously, the RNG need not cater to all the piety rules, just the most restrictive ones.

Also note that not all of Crawl's normal gods have a conduct, so I'm not convinced that random gods absolutely must have one.
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Post Friday, 16th September 2011, 17:14

Re: Random gods

jpeg: Thanks for the reply. I also think that we're actually filling Strongpoint's idea with content. I have no idea where he spots the divergence.

When I say rare, I mean less than in one game. As I wrote on the wiki, the altars should generally come reasonably early, say pre-Lair. Say a game has a chance of 2/3 of getting a random god, then I'd say that almost all of those should be pre-Lair, with half of them actually coming up in the D:2-9 range. There is no point in providing random gods when they're too late to be even contemplated by most. (For example, many gods will ask you to go in a special direction.)

The idea for Wanderers is interesting. Note that certain players will make lists of preferred properties and roll endless numbers of Wanderers, however.

Regarding conducts: I pulled 40% as a chance for a major conduct out off my hat.
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Post Friday, 16th September 2011, 19:01

Re: Random gods

dpeg wrote:The idea for Wanderers is interesting. Note that certain players will make lists of preferred properties and roll endless numbers of Wanderers, however.

I am aware of this and not fully convinced of the idea, either. However, if Wanderers are changed to start with a random god that really increases the incentive for startscumming, and like you say, players will do so. Not even for the purposes of minmaxing, but for much simpler reasons ("No spellcasting? You've got to be kidding!").
Hopefully, giving the player a choice beforehand should cut down on this for casual players.
However, if we go that route and don't include a rerolling option, this would only make rerolling more of a hassle (quit, then restart the character selection) but won't stop anyone from doing it. And of course, you'll still have to adapt to your random stats, equipment and skills, which might not be ideal for the god you just picked either.

The alternative is not giving Wanderers a random religion, straight and simple.
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Post Friday, 16th September 2011, 23:04

Re: Random gods

Just went through the thread once more and I think I've combed out all the power ideas I liked and which seemed reasonably simple.

jpeg: I realised that the Wanderer vs random god question already came up in a different context: whether Lugonu should be available as a starting god or not. Here, the advantage of religious Wanderers is that players can test random gods, and the drawback is that the altar to a bizarre god on D:5 becomes less mystical. In this situation, I am inclined to say that Wanderers should not have a religion (the opposite to what we did with Lugonu).

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Post Saturday, 17th September 2011, 00:42

Re: Random gods

Some ideas, I hate wiki and can't make it nicely formatted, so I'll post here

Fire related

Piety gain:
1) sacrificing fire related items ( ring\staff\wand of fire, scroll of immolation, fire branded weapons, spellbooks\rods with fire spells)
2) exploring while wearing\wielding\using fire items (same as above)
3) Training Fire magic skill
4) evaporating expensive potions (not water and confusion)

piety loss\penance
1) Wearing\wielding\using ice items
2) Training Ice magic skill or casting ice magic spells
3) Casting any non-fire spell
4) Killing fire related monsters
5) Dealing damage in any way but using fire (fire branded weapons are OK)

Powers
1) Fire resistance
2) Summon fire elementals or another fire related monsters
3) Permanently\ temporary brand unarmed attacks with fire
4) Fire breath
5) Hellfire
6) Fire related monsters are neutral

stealth related

piety gain
1) killing sleeping monsters
2) Training stealth

Piety loss\penance
1) doing noisy things
2) Wearing armor heavier then leather
3) waking up monsters (severe, but it's stealth god)

powers
1) invisibility
2) controlled blink (blinking is the stealthiest way to move)
3) spell noise reduction
4) flat stealth bonus
5) all weapons are as effective for stabbing as short blades

Armor related

piety gain:
1) Exploring while wearing armor heavier than ring mail ( more AC = quicker gain)
2) Training armor skill
3) Gaining Strength attribute ( minor but nice )

piety loss\penance:
1) wearing armor lighter than ring mail
2) training dodging
3) voluntary gaining dexterity\intelligence

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Post Saturday, 17th September 2011, 02:43

Re: Random gods

dpeg wrote:When I say rare, I mean less than in one game. As I wrote on the wiki, the altars should generally come reasonably early, say pre-Lair. Say a game has a chance of 2/3 of getting a random god, then I'd say that almost all of those should be pre-Lair, with half of them actually coming up in the D:2-9 range. There is no point in providing random gods when they're too late to be even contemplated by most. (For example, many gods will ask you to go in a special direction.)


Idea: One in a hundred games, you can find a small vault tucked out of the way, hidden behind a secret door, with a small selection of random gods - The Temple of the Minor Gods. (Or whatever name they end up getting called.) A small shrine created by devotees of some half-formed deities, in the likely-misguided hopes that their gods might someday be found again. (You still might find a single altar somewhere before Lair, this suggestion just means that very so often you might find multiple gods to pick from in a hopefully-flavorful manner.)

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Post Saturday, 17th September 2011, 11:16

Re: Random gods

nicolae: Yes, those will inevitably come up once the feature is in! (And I don't mind. I find the idea of a temple of the minor gods very attractive, it's like the religious underground resistance :) )

Strongpoint: would a god use all of those facets or just some? If all, then you're effectively designing complete gods rather than randomly assembled ones. If some, then you're rephrasing what I tried to express with the *forced*, *exclusion* and (relevant here) *thematic* fields.

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Post Saturday, 17th September 2011, 12:50

Re: Random gods

Dpeg, gods should get some from facets, in fact they usually should get some from different facets... And I especially dislike the "forced" part of the current design direction

Let's say we get a god that rolled [loves fire] and [loves armor] tags then we may get a god that can gain piety from exploring in armor, prohibits killing fire related creatures and gets, fire resistance bonus to fire magic and summon fire elemental as powers + some armor related wrath. This god is truly random. Powers and piety source aren't linked but they don't contradict each other

Or lets say we got a god that rolled [loves fire] and [hates magic] tags then we may get a god that get piety by sacraficing fire related items, prohibits casting, gives magic resistance, fire resistance and fire branded unarmed attack, and sends hostile fire elementals as a a wrath. Here conduct and piety source aren't linked at all, but they don't contradict each other

Or we may get a god with one tag [Loves fire] then we have many combinations of random fire themed gods


What I dislike in the wiki page?
1) linked conduct\piety\powers\wrath. Like if god prohibits drinking potions then he accepts potions as sacrifices and vice versa. I think you should get lucky to get such combo. Current gods don't work like that. TSO doesn't accept poisoned weapons, Zin doesn't accept potion of mutation, and Elyvilon doesn't ban weapons
2) Trend to balance piety\conduct\powers\wrath separately, so all random gods will get comparable piety source, powers, conducts, wraths... I'd would prefer situations like god with cool powers but severe conduct and bad piety source or god with easy piety, no conduct at all and weak powers. For random gods it's OK if they are rolled completely useless or slightly owerpowered
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Post Saturday, 17th September 2011, 14:45

Re: Random gods

Strongpoint wrote:What I dislike in the wiki page?
1) linked conduct\piety\powers\wrath. Like if god prohibits drinking potions then he accepts potions as sacrifices and vice versa. I think you should get lucky to get such combo. Current gods don't work like that. TSO doesn't accept poisoned weapons, Zin doesn't accept potion of mutation, and Elyvilon doesn't ban weapons

Right, I've been meaning to comment on that. I think it would be a pity if the conducts and piety rules are always linked. Like you say, I think it would be more fun if that only happened sometimes. Could be truly random or use skewed weights. Gods could easily accept sacrifices without forbidding usage of said items, and vice versa. In short: I agree.

2) Trend to balance piety\conduct\powers\wrath separately, so all random gods will get comparable piety source, powers, conducts, wraths... I'd would prefer situations like god with cool powers but severe conduct and bad piety source or god with easy piety, no conduct at all and weak powers. For random gods it's OK if they are rolled completely useless or slightly owerpowered
I'm not sure I understand. So far, I've interpreted the 'Building a god' summary to mean that major conducts need to be balanced out with strong powers, and vice versa, which is exactly what you're describing here, though I guess it's possible I'm completely misunderstanding dpeg or you, or the both of you. That said, I don't think that having a rare piety source would be much fun, no matter whether the powers you can't reach are weak or strong.

I rather like the tagging system you suggested. At the very least, there needs to be some way to mark conducts or powers that contradict each other. Connecting some conducts with appropriate powers (e.g. gold tax with shop lifting) sounds like what you're trying to achieve with the tags, only worded differently. Some piety rules just make sense in combination with a particular restriction (e.g. a spider-hating god forbidding spider form), so those could get a combination score of (close to) 100%. It's not at all clear how the set of conducts and powers could be implemented, and arguing about technicalities might be premature.
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Post Saturday, 17th September 2011, 17:28

Re: Random gods

Strongpoint: Why "should"? We're brainstorming and there are so many viable options. I am not convinced about the facets, although they would probably work.

The *forced* tags would be rather rare. They reduce randomness but they increase theme and, more importantly, gameplay.

Example: "no buying".
Suppose you have a conduct "never buy anything". It is meaningful, but is it cool? You're going to see many shops in the game and perhaps a bazaar and all of that is useless content to you. That can be done but it will be a lot more fun if accompanied by an ability "shoplift" (can steal one item from a shop). This makes shops still useful but completely changes your approach to them. Because I value the unfun-ness of the "no buying" to be very high and think that "shoplift" is cool and interesting, I am inclined to just force the latter upon the former (note that you could still get Shoplift as a random on a random god, without having the conduct; the forcing goes one way, something my wiki page proposal does in fact not reflect).
I admit that the other part of my list ("comes with sacrifice of all gold in view") is less necessary. So it shouldn't be forced but just tagged as fitting together well. They fit well because the conduct lends itself naturally to a piety rule ("sacrifice gold") which is flavourful and strong enough to support a god completely (no additional piety rule needed).
So this would be an example where the conduct would, in my version, always force an ability and sometimes lead to a piety rule. (Here you can also see why in my proposal conducts are chosen first.)

There seems to be another disagreement, about how many parts a random god should have. I lean towards as few as possible (e.g. at most two piety rules), for two practical reasons.
First, we have to explain the god. This is much harder if piety gain (say) comes from four different sources. With two, you can even indicate with a single word which piety source is stronger. A very practical instance of this that the god's description has to fit on half of a standard (80x24) console screen.
Second, it is easier to balance.

A final source of disagreement is about god total strength, for lack of a better word (what Strongpoint describes as "...all random gods will get comparable piety source, powers, conducts, wraths"). My proposal doesn't even say this. In fact, it even implies that if you get (another) conduct slapped on your random god, then obviously the powers will be stronger.
What we really should care about is that the gods have always enough ooomph. A random god which allows to hurl one conjuration-type blast and who gives three resistances is a dud, even if piety is for free.

Some parting comments: Gods don't need conducts (somewhere I suggested to have 40% of random gods start with a major conduct) but conducts help a lot to *feel* a god (because you have to adapt playing style in some way) and adds theme because you almost always get a power/piety rule for free (as explained in the example above). In fact, one bit I really love about random gods is that we can use conducts which wouldn't be suitable for a Temple god. That's a lot more interesting to me than just random assemblies of abilities.
In roguelikes, there is always a tension between randomness on the one hand and restricting variance on the other (compare random level building with vaults, or random monster/item generation with OOD restrictions). I suppose that we want our random gods to be fun and useful, this is why I suggest to sacrifice some randomness in favour of those two.
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