Slime Pits

Name dcss:brainstorm:branch: slime
Summary Brainstorm ideas for the Slime Pits.
Further information Jiyva
Added by dpeg
Added on 2009-12-08 05:57

dpeg: I find Slime to be one of the best branches: unique monster set and threat, cool branch end level, Jiyva and the Royal Jelly.

Slime walls do not corrode armours anymore. (As of 2010-09-04.)

dpeg believes that this is the main cause of annoyance with the new branch. We should look at the remaining issues (digging rules; layout) at a later point.


Acidic Properties

Intelligent non-resistant monsters could try to stay away from damaging walls — ortoslon 2010-08-01 17:30

Agreed. — evktalo 2010-08-02 19:34

Walls and dig/disintegrate

Some players feel the need to cut 3-glyphs-wide roads through Slime levels. (Although the intent to do so may have decreased after slimy walls not affecting armours anymore.) Ideas to change that:

  • keskitalo; corexii in 1646: Walls pull back when dug/disintegrated, so that each wall dug made all the walls around the square also destroyed. But the walls that were destroyed this way would grow back. The ones that the actual dig beam hit wouldn't. This'll make digging a tunnel now easier, while keeping making permanent routes expensive. I'd rather do this than change the layout (radically). And I'm really fine with the current setup. — evktalo 2010-08-07 09:57
    • Problem is, that digging permanent three-wide corridors becomes even more tedious, and with the inexhaustible Dig spell, there's no reason to not dig three-wide corridors at your leisure. Also you can use LRD, Shatter and IOOD, not just Dig. (casmith789) — evktalo 2010-12-31 04:36
  • Change layout, so that no digging is really needed. (dpeg is not too fond of that idea, although the layout could clearly be improved. I just think that disconnected areas are okay in Slime.)

Growing walls

From 2873261: Replace some or all of the walls in Slime with walls of oozing slime. My thought: these are bright green, translucent. You can see through one square of these as if they were glass. Two squares lets you see a blurry shape on the other side if there are any monsters/items (possibly monster genus/detected-item ~, but possibly just a generic 'blurry shape' ~, depending on what people think works better). Three squares of this type of wall will block LOS. You can't get through them with Dig or LRD or Shatter, because they're just gooey glop. Can be disintegrated, or hacked through (splattering you with acid, damaging your weapon, etc).

Slime walls could be interesting if they regrow using something like game-of-life style rules (but no outright die-off except when totally isolated). Tunnels seal fast, fill in totally more slowly. Pockets more slowly still grow smaller. This could make a good vault in the dungeon, too.

re: both acidic floors & growing walls: Slime's environmental hazard, the walls, create a unique and interesting challenge in themselves. Adding more, while good ideas in themselves, might be too much - at least I think we should wait and see. Of course, they could add variation - right now five levels of acidic claustrophobia and then the final showdown with TRJ are pretty intense. But I think the branch should have at least a couple of floors of the acidic wall onslaught. — evktalo 2010-08-02 19:34


I am unhappy with slime's level generation. Generally levels have the form of several “bubbles,” regions of the level not connected to each other except via stairs/escape hatches. Slime walls were added, and connectivity rules for bubbles were not changed. So a given region of the level may be connected via non-wall squares, but the path through the region may be blocked by damaging wall-adjacent squares. I find this (parts of a given bubble being blocked by damage squares) exceedingly annoying. I propose changing level generation to ensure that parts of a given bubble are connected via non-damage squares, leaving different bubbles being disconnected from each other as a separate issue.

For background, I filed issue 1646 which was subsequently derailed and refocused on slime walls corroding armor, which I don't care about. By the end of that FR I believe I got agreement in principle from dpeg on adjusting the level generation–although his last edit to this page (mentioning the corrosion change in bright red, expressing dislike of changing levgen to not require digging, proposing adding damage floor everywhere) suggests that he may be stepping back on that.

Anyway, here are a couple proposals I'm willing to implement (all by caotto 2010-09-08 04:56 unless noted):

  • Generate slime levels as now, then run a single pass of erosion, dropping walls adjacent to at least one square of open space. This may leave levels excessively open, but it does have the virtue of being trivial to implement.
    • This would work, but for your purpose, much less erosion is needed. Your second approach is better. — dpeg 2010-09-08 11:48
  • Use a search based approach – run connected component analysis (considering slime adjacent walls as blocking), iteratively search through slime adjacent walls in each component to find a path to a different component, if a path is found remove walls adjacent to squares in the path. This is less intrusive than the other approach, if somewhat more complicated.
    • Yet this is much better. I like this approach a lot. I support the goal “autoexploring a Slime level (component) will eventually (once all monsters are taken care of) explore the full bubble”. — dpeg 2010-09-08 11:48
  • Afterwards, one can add a few walls in bubbles again, as these are tactically interesting. (Of course in a way not messing with unharmed exploration.) — dpeg 2010-09-08 11:48
Hey, I always said that something could be done about Slime's layout. As I see it, the current version (no more corrosion) works tactically well, but it is true that we force players to explore levels manually. (Which is also true of Abyss and labyrinths, but it is always a good idea to enable autoexplore if possible.) Your suggestion we take care of that, so I support it. — dpeg 2010-09-08 11:48
Even though I like the current wall situation, since you (caotto) are willing to implement, I support going ahead with changes. The things I like about what is there now can be used again elsewhere, and could work well (and with less pain) in a single-level (portal vault) context. — evktalo 2010-09-11 20:36

Another Proposal

I suggest using the following algorithm for changing walls:

Every X ticks, each slime wall has a chance of being removed equal to 10% - 2%/adjacent wall, minimum 0.1%. Conversely, empty areas have a chance of becoming slime walls equal to 2% for each adjacent slime wall over 3 (or equivalently 10% - 2% for each adjacent empty space), minimum 0.1%. Since cells with at least 5 neighbors of their own type very seldom change, convex spaces are stable and round bubbles neither grow nor shrink. What will happen is that isolated bits of slime will disappear, narrow corridors will get filled in, and sharp corners will get rounded off. X can be larger or smaller depending how fast you want the process to be. — lemuel 2010-08-14 19:55

Okay, that's it. I'll start to learn about cellular automata today. This stuff is really fun and has many applications in roguelike games. I'm concerned about unforeseen effects Lemuel's proposal might have. — b0rsuk 2010-08-15 11:01
I really like the idea of an 'organic' branch (which grows attackable walls which you have to cut through). And I agree that Slime would fit, but it might be more interesting to reserve that idea for another branch (e.g. Forest), since Slime is already full of unique stuff. — dpeg 2010-09-04 22:51
That “unique stuff” actually makes Slime the best choice, I think, especially if this is done in an aggressive manner - shifting walls in other branches would only be moving terrain, but slime's acid walls means that it'd be shifting damaging zones around as well, which would make the mechanic more interesting and more of an immediate concern for the player. — og17 2010-09-08 12:48
This is a good point. I wouldn't mind if we got a patch for growing walls the player has to hack into. The idea could still be used somewhere else: growing plants will play differently, I think. — dpeg 2010-09-08 16:04

Acidic floor

From 2906629: Inspired by the Green Slime of D&D infamy, a slimy floor slows movement much like shallow water and polymorphs any player who stands on them for extended durations into a “slime form.” Strongly acid resistant, no weapons, no spellcasting. These floors could litter the Royal Jelly's lair, making a rush to the outer walls to dig a corridor for jelly-fighting a much more difficult proposition. Since levitating characters shouldn't get a total break, there could be clouds of spores above the slime floor that also grant the slime polymorph. This floor is covered by a putrid, slimy moss, releasing ominous clouds of spores into the air. Portions of the moss seem to crawl and shift of their own accord. Additionally, the moss could spread somehow like ballistomycetes. I don't know off-hand if the moss/slime should be destructable or not.

A different idea: Slime floor could deal damage — similar (but less) than walls. For a number, Slime:5 floor doing enough damage to reduce HP by 1 every twenty turns (including standard regeneration!) could be interesting. — dpeg 2010-09-04 22:51


Death oozes

Need more of them, they pose a unique and interesting threat in Slime.

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dcss/brainstorm/dungeon/branch/slime.txt · Last modified: 2012-10-02 04:55 by infiniplex
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