Pillar Dancing Removal

Name dcss:brainstorm:misc: pillar dancing
Summary Thinking about ways how to get rid of pillar dancing.
Added by dpeg
Added on 2011-06-27 23:05

Pillar dancing: to run (usually in circles, sometimes around a single block of wall) while followed by one or more monsters. There are two reasons why players do this:

  1. Wait for the speed randomisation to kick in, so the player can safely attack twice or escape (read scroll, ascend stairs, etc.).
  2. Regain MP and/or HP.

Currently, pillar dancing is optimal. (Several good players maintain that it is necessary to beat D:1 consistently.)

Here we are looking for ways how to remove pillar dancing such that the naive players won't even notice. In particular, fleeing should be possible without any impedement.

  • Food clock: If you move (not attack) in sight of a monster, increase innate hunger by far. Several options, for example to ramp up hunger cost with the duration of the dance. Drawback: players can then try to pillar dance without monster in sight (or to break line of contact from time to time) — countermeasure: increase hunger if the player is actively hunted, the monster being visible or not.
    • What of mummies, and to a lesser extent, those who can eat (rotten) meat freely? — mrmistermonkey 2011-06-28 00:57
    • Extremely unintuitive. A player that pillar dances would hardly understand WTF he suddenly hunger that much without doing anything special. Unless he reads spoilers. — doublep 2011-06-28 22:58
  • Call for help: A monster that follows the player for a while may get support from another monster of the same genus (this includes animals, no messages needed).
    • Or just increase the chance of spawning a monster nearby with the time spent fleeing. This would be nearly unnoticeable and plays into the inherent risk of pillar dancing. — Borrovan
  • Obstacles: This is hard to get right, but creating short-lived plants (toadstool) or shafts during pillar dances would be awesome. This can be pretty rare to matter!
  • No regeneration: You cannot regenerate HP/MP with a monster in sight. First drawback: forces players to manually rest up all the time. Second drawback: like with ramped up food clock, players can try to break LOS.
    • Third drawback: increased regeneration rate (from being a troll, casting the spell, wearing the ring/armour, having the mutation, others?) loses combat appeal (now only useful for taking shorter rests or regenerating while moving, as in speedruns and diving Hell). — mrmistermonkey 2011-06-28 00:57
  • Raise starting stats: Pillar-dancing is a symptom of the early-game design, not the problem itself. Currently, most race/caster background combinations have a limited amount of mp and a fairly high chance of wasting it in a miscast. If you have three chances to kill that first monster that sees you, which sometimes appears before you have access to even one item spawn on the floor, you'll need some way of dealing with the problem if the RNG arbitrarily decides that you can't kill it with your starting 3mp. Pillar-dancing extends your mana bar against D1 fodder without aggravating the entire level, so if the mana bar is long enough to do the job on its own without extension pillar-dancing will no longer be necessary. Similarly, starting melee types can survive as many as three hits against an unarmed hobgoblin, and they tend to get into prolonged whiffing matches where neither combatant can successfully deal damage at all. They are basically forced to wait until the RNG feels like awarding a hit streak to one combatant or the other, and pillar-dancing is a method to reset the clock if the streak goes the wrong way. — koboldlord 2011-06-29 01:26
    • I think koboldlord nailed it. A while ago I suggested to just spawn players at 2nd experience level, or with one scroll of blinking (it can be an equivalent item to prevent from having all blink scrolls identified). Poor stats and lack of escape tools is what pillar dancing stems from. — b0rsuk 2012-10-31 21:36
  • Fatigue: Movement with a monster in LOS or whilst wounded is counted, and when the counter becomes too high the character may become breathless, exhausted and eventually slow. Any action apart from movement lowers the count.— Borrovan
  • Monster speed: Speed 10 monsters encourage pillar dancing. Fast monsters encourage the use of consumables to kill them quickly if necessary, while slow monsters encourage measured retreat and rest. While neither option is great, both are a hell of a lot less tedious than pillar dancing. To that end, I suggest the following changes to D:1 monster movement speeds: Goblins become speed 11, kobolds stay at 10, hobgoblins go to 9. Attack speed remains unchanged. In addition to decreasing pillar dancing, this also would make those monsters “feel” distinctly different, relieving early-game monotony. Their AC/EV could be adjusted if it seems necessary for game balance. Furthermore, I think this idea could be extended to generally discourage pillar dancing. -IonFrigate
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dcss/brainstorm/gameplay/pillar_dancing.txt · Last modified: 2012-10-31 21:39 by b0rsuk
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