No-Brainers & Uninteresting Choices List

Name dcss:brainstorm:misc: List of current no-brainers
Summary “A very important point in Crawl is steering away from no-brainers. Speaking about games in general, wherever there's a no-brainer, that means the development team put a lot of effort into providing a “choice” that's really not an interesting choice at all. And that's a horrible lost opportunity for fun.” - from DCSS manual
Further information The opposite of this page: 0.8 Plan
Added by b0rsuk
Added on 2010-09-06 10:06

General information

We should try to eliminate as many items from this page as possible. Please try to be as specific as possible when defining no-brainers. Ideally they should be things that leave no doubt and no weasel words can be used to squeeze away. Should this page be formatted differently, for example similar to planned features ?

The no-brainers

Learn only one weapon skill

Differences between weapon classes are fairly minor. You can use almost any weapon the same way. This is highly unlike most magic schools. People win with axes, polearms, maces, long blades, staves, and unarmed. Unarmed has some equipment restrictions and offers less resistances, but it's the same otherwise. It's a bit like a slot machine - you choose a type early and some randarts may fall your way. Switching to another weapon class costs, and is not worth it aside from exceptional randarts. No one uses cross-training willingly (no one who wants to learn Long Blades would train Short Blades if he started with a falchion).

Possible solutions

What about skills like stabbing, blocking (no more useless shields skill for 2H weapons), hitting, armour penetrating, feinting, stunning, tripping, disarming, entangling, choking or others like this? Skill is what you do, not what tools you use. It's throwing not darts\javelins\rocks\daggers. Most of the skills above should be usable with most weapons but with different effectiveness.

See also

Stabbing Revision

dpeg and b0rsuk seem to agree Short Blades is actually the best implemented weapon skill. They prefer Option 2. Short blades are well defined and not easy to replace with any other weapon type. Others argue that Short Blades is the broken weapon skill and should be fixed, which means making it more like the other weapon skills.

Use the biggest combat form

Forms player can transform to are disturbingly similar to melee weapons. Only this time they have minimum requirement and are found in books. The progress is for most part linear. Spellcasters are fixated on Necromutation (lich form) with no alternatives. Everyone else is not taken into account.

Forms are not actually linear. This is not a problem. — tgw 2010-09-06 15:24

Possible solutions

  • Pros and cons: player should want to switch forms according to situation. Few forms should be strictly better than others.

See also

There is an optimal weapon within each class

This is mostly a stub. The rule of the thumb is to use “heaviest weapon available”, accounting for shield (binary). Weapon speed is only a factor in calculating damage per time, not ability to kill more monsters quickly. Accuracy is not valued (not enough glass cannon monsters?). It's all about damage per unit of time. — b0rsuk 2010-09-06 10:06

It's not “heaviest”, it's “best”. Demon whips are among the lightest yet best; most other weapons tend to grow heavier as they go up in quality, but that's mostly for theme reasons.
And what's wrong with “high-end weapons are better”? They are supposed to be! If we made that hand axe as good as a broad, no one would ever bother upgrading. We already give some incentives to not upgrade before your skills are up to scratch – you require some investments to overcome the accuracy malus, a big investment to overcome 1.5-handed penalties, but in the end, you're supposed to use best stuff. If we suddenly made hand axes as good as broads/execs, a good part of the game would be lost – there would be nothing to strive for.
Different weapon brands and, especially, randarts, stop just using the better base type from being a non-brainer. Would you use a +1,+10 mace {vamp, +Blink +Rage AC+4 EV+6 Stlth++} or a demon whip of venom? — kilobyte 2010-09-14 22:48
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dcss/brainstorm/gameplay/list_of_current_no-brainers.txt · Last modified: 2014-04-12 18:37 by Reaver
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