Gold God

From 2804620, which was a modified version of 2666990, made by hammerbroish and dpeg.

Some comments two years later in greendpeg 2013-03-27 15:04
And yet another year later, this time bluedpeg 2014-04-03 00:17

Gozag Ym Sagoz, the Greedy, believes that the world belongs to the rich. Those
accepting the decree perform noticeably better when they see gold glint around
them. Followers don't earn piety in a traditional way, the only way to impress
this deity is by amassing a fortune. For Gozag Ym Sagoz, both flesh and food
are inferior to wealth, and therefore all corpses are turned into gold piles.
Stalwarts can order immediate help in form of potions on sale, prices being
dictated by the Greedy. Particularly well off adherers can pay their god to
duplicate items, attract shopkeepers into the dungeon, and even to bribe whole
branches. The Greedy hates it when followers change level without first having
collected all the gold they can.

Piety

  • There is no piety under Gozag but powers cost gold.
  • No skill is related to Gozag powers.
  • Upon entering service, a fee must be payed: Count the total amount C of gold of all levels visited (whether the gold was seen/detected or not). The fee to be paid when entering service is fee = 300 + (1 - 1/log(C+10))/2 * C [logarithm with base 10] If too much: The Greedy does not accept service from beggars like you.
  • Leaving a level with known gold is bad: further use of abilities will be more expensive (how much depends on the amount of money you missed out on).

Not sure on the last rule anymore: if the player is supposed to get all golf of the level, then gold should be pre-mapped. This way, the conduct would come with an actual gain (restricted mapping). However, bubbles or being forced to leave may make it better to just drop this point, or pre-map gold without a conduct. — dpeg 2013-03-27 15:04

Passive effects

  • Indicate all piles containing gold. Some options:
    • They are coloured yellow (i.e. the top item is).
    • Alternatively, we can use branding.
    • Still another option: treat gold as the topmost item in the pile (i.e. show the gold glyph with whatever pile brand you use.) This has a gameplay effect in that player cannot see the top items anymore (but you could say that is because they shouldn't: the gold is clearly the most important thing in that pile.)
  • Any corpses from player or ally kills (but not from traps) are turned into gold piles: Use weight (or size), with small monsters (rats) giving 1d3 gold, up to huge monsters like dragons giving around 100 gold. Randomise amounts. [These numbers will obviously need tweaking. The goal is that followers get a lot more gold, enough to pay for those powers.]
  • Gold piles from killing are considered 'fresh' for some duration (shorter than it takes for a corpse to rot). After something between 20 and 100 turns (alternatively, duration depends on actual monetary amount), the gold turns non-fresh.
  • Fresh gold gets a halo (of size 1) with the halo (but not the gold) getting an elemental colour. Once the pile becomes non-fresh, revert to the static yellow colouring from above (no halo).
  • When in sight of n fresh gold piles, increase all skills by n (bezond 27). Note that gold found on the ground is never fresh and that fresh piles turn non-fresh rather quickly: This way, luring monsters to gold is not possible and we don't need a conduct forcing players to pick up gold.
  • Monsters carrying picked-up gold are not indicated. (Otherwise, we encourage players to try to make monsters pick up gold.)

The skill boost is not as novel as it was years ago, due to Ashenzari and Okawaru. Other options are possible. What I want is a short-term, noticeably (also on the main screen) effect. Stat boosts are out (already covered by Cheibriados and not so useable in short bursts). There are certainly enough other options: the glittering gold makes monsters skip a turn; or the fresh gold acts as a mimic attacking monsters; or also a plain EV boost.
However, for a start the skill boost is good enough: easy to implement and useful.

Comment from play testing: gold aura has changed into an ability that causes enemies in LOS to lose turns with a (I believe) 5% chance per gold pile. So the chance for a monster to lose a turn is (1 - (0.95^n)), where n is number of fresh gold piles. It feels to me that the effect of 1 pile is almost unnoticeable, but rises to a decent percentage when there are a few piles (4-5 is quite noticeable). IMO this would work better if the chance for a single pile to have an effect is higher (say 15-20%) with the effect of additional piles stacking less. Trying to pile enemy bodies on one location is tedious and really only works for relatively weak pack enemies. In addition, the current formula seems to be uncapped, so if one can somehow pile up 50 fresh gold piles, it would stop enemies 90% of the time. — DracheReborn 2014-05-22 13:43

Abilities

All available all the time, as long as the follower has enough cash.

  1. Potion Petition. Presents three lists of up to five potions effects, with prices. Choosing one causes all effects to occur in a single turn.
  2. Call Merchant. Choice between three shops. New shopkeepers can only go into untouched levels of branches which can feature shops.
  3. Bribe Branch. Money spends for a branch is used to make monsters either ignore the player completely or make them followers. In both cases, try to bribe the better monsters (e.g. orc warlords rather than plain orcs). Followers are permanent and level up but need pay from time to time.
  4. Duplication. One-off altar power.Pay for a non-randart/unique item to be duplicated.

Of these, the bribe and calling merchant are as good as ever. I changed my mind on Duplication: it is a good idea, but will work better (gameplay and interface) if it is a one-off altar power; see below. Potion Petition is still the best I have to offer for a tactical ability (which the god needs), but I can easily imagine someone else coming up with a much better idea.

What if worshipping the god also let you have the option to spend gold to get into a Treasure Trove instead of finding random junk? It seems like it might be a thematic fit since god looks like it's about getting and spending gold to get what you need. This could easily just be flavored as another of his powers and you're just spending gold to use it. For example, “Gozag will let you into this treasure trove for 2734 gold. Pay it? Y/N” — TwilightPhoenix 2011-08-17 21:06
That is a cool idea but even more thematic, in my opinion, would be to have the god offer what you need. E.g. if you are looking for a trove item, one of the three Merchants could always come in a single-item shops (which sells only that trove item). The price for the Merchant would be high; the price for the item in the shop only nominal (so that players can make an informed decision). — dpeg 2013-09-24 02:00

Potion Petition

Randomly generates three sequences of up to five potions. Each sequence has a price which is determined by the prices of the good potion effects and the presence/absence of bad potions. There is a fourth sequence containing just a water potion with a high price. Example:
a) 240$ - might, healing, poison, healing, decay
b) 320$ - speed, healing
c) 550$ - degeneration, cure mutation
d) 500$ - water
Upon choosing a sequence, all effects are carried out in a single turn. Mummies cannot use this ability. With ongoing usage, prices increase slowly. (Perhaps not necessary.) How to create the potion lists: use hard-coded interesting pairs/triples with predefined values. When rolling a sequence, use a pair, a triple, two pairs or pair+triple. Have a list of potions than can be appended to the list (including paralysis, slowing, strong poison).
Examples:
200: mutation, mutation
200: degeneration, decay, speed
500: magic, cure mutation
1000: heal wounds, heal wounds, heal wounds

The situation has changed somewhat, with potions of Beneficial Mutation and Lignification. I still think this can be made to work, although the idea of the fixed, expensive water potion was and is horrible.

Will a significant number of these potions be potions of porridge? With turning all corpses into gold, any follower of this god will be grasping for nutrition, and especially so for races with accelerated metabolisms. A potion of porridge could even replace the potion of water as the “default” option, although its price would have to be increased. Furthermore (although this may not be the best idea), I don't believe that mummies necessarily should not be able to use this power. Deep dwarves can't heal, but that doesn't mean that Makhleb's healing power cannot affect them. If we wanted to allow this power to affect mummies as well, then this god could become to mummies what Makhleb is to deep dwarves. — wensleydale 2010-10-01 11:54
This leaves problems with: trolls (insane hunger), kobolds (no porridge) and ghouls (need corpses). — kilobyte 2010-10-01 12:40
For mummies, note that there are two potion-themed cards which work on them. — kilobyte 2010-10-01 12:40
Good points by both of you. I like it that the gold god would en passant stress the food clock. Yes, some species will like that less than others, but I don't think too many are affected. Mummies could use the god just fine, and trolls, spriggans and kobolds can go for food shops and/or porridge. Look at the existing gods: they all have species indifferent or negative towards them, it wouldn't be worse here. — dpeg 2010-10-01 14:40
There's definitely an argument there for not allowing mummies to use the potion ability, since they wouldn't have the nutrition shortage that other races would experience. As for kobolds and trolls, they'd likely be forced to use the duplication ability to duplicate large stacks of permafood between forays into deep branches. Ghouls are the biggest difficulty, but I have some ideas to help them out. — wensleydale 2010-10-01 15:58
As promised, a new proposal: smokehouses (https://crawl.develz.org/wiki/doku.php?id=dcss:brainstorm:item:smokehouse), which, in conjunction with the duplication ability, would change the idea of troll, kobold, and ghoul followers of the gold god from infeasible to merely very challenging. Smokehouses also complement the gold god's ability to create new shops. — wensleydale 2010-10-01 17:33

Duplication

Drop any mundane item at an altar (or a stack) and invoke the ability to create a copy. No gold cost. Can be only used once.

Reasoning: without a gold cost, we're avoiding all interface pain — the player can choose an item and rely that the power will work. I don't think it is overpowered: sure, you can duplicate the ring of Shaolin but perhaps you would have been better off duplicating something lesser much earlier? Using an altar is not only flavourful, but also makes sure that you cannot duplicate some potion stack in the heat of battle. This is supposed to be a strategic power. If someone needs flavour for this ability: it is a parable on how the rich get more and more while the poor struggle.

Duplication really only works on a few items, because for a lot of equipment, crawl only allows use of one at a time so there's no point to duplicate, say, armour or weapon. So it's basically rings + consumables + wands and maybe evokables. IMO there's a big gap in the desirable items to dup - if you don't have a ring of slaying, or a good wand, or scroll of acquirement, is it worth using up the ability to get an extra blink scroll or haste potion? I think consumables could be a lot more attractive to duplicate if it works on stacks, e.g. your 3 EW scrolls become 6. Also adds an element of gambling - the longer you wait, the larger your stack will be - but can you afford to wait? — DracheReborn 2014-05-22 13:43

Call Merchant

Example:
a) 5050$ - Arutovi's Delicatessen
b) 12770$ - Rumi's Antique Book Store
c) 2820$ - Grajor's General Shop
After paying: Rumi sets up her new shop in the Shoals. The price depends on the type of shop (including whether it is antique or not), the total value of stock and perhaps on the number of shopkeepers already called. If we want further shops to be more expensive, then depth of the shop (relevant for item generation) should increase with useage; otherwise, it should directly relate to the cost of the shop. Since the shops have to be affordable to the player, the amount of carried gold affects these parameters. Note the bought but not yet visited shops in Ctrl-O (presumably in a colour different from grey and yellow).

Could be interesting for this to have a very, very low chance to offer a bazaar for a very steep price. Low enough that you're not likely to see the option more than once a game, if you see it at all. — TwilightPhoenix 2011-08-17 21:06
I'd like to change the cost of this so that instead of an up front payment, Gozag charges you a percentage of what you spent in the Called shop. And perhaps make it a passive - periodically Gozag sponsors shops to open and he will take his cut from you if you buy anything. Personally I've found the gold cost too high for too big of a gamble (I'd rather spend the same amount on 2-3 Potion Petitions) but perhaps that's just me. — DracheReborn 2014-05-22 13:43

Bribe Branch

Each branch (except Dungeon and branches only inhabited by stupid monsters) has a “branch bribe score”. Using this ability in a branch adds 3000 gold to the score of the player's current branch. For branches with a positive score:

  • Monsters may either ignore the player fully (allowing to walk past them, switch places, use autotravel) or become followers (allies).
  • When entering a level of a bribed branch, immediately choose and mark bribed monsters. Bribed monsters are awake. For each type of bribable monster, chances for being bribed are highest for the top end of the hierarchy.
  • Each monster ignoring the player reduces the branch bribe score. Same for monsters following the player, with stronger reduction.
  • Monster which ignore the player will also ignore anyone else: they swap positions with any other monster who wants to do.
  • Followers demand payment from time to time. Not paying them makes them ignore the player for a while and turn hostile later, or leave the dungeon.
  • Monsters stemming from a branch with positive score can be affected outside their branch (e.g. orcs in the dungeon).
  • If a band is generated, all or none band members are affected.
  • The score slowly reduces over time. If the score is zero again, make all monsters become hostile again, except for the (paid) followers.

Bribe targets: Orc (orcs), Elf (elves), Snake (nagas), Shoals (merfolk), Vaults (humans), Zot (draconians), hells (appropriate demons). The branch scores are visible in the ^! screen in a qualitative manner:
Elves: lightly bribed.
Draconians: strongly bribed.
(The adjectives refer to the chance that a top-tier monster of that genus will be affected.)

Attacking bribed monsters:

  • If attacking a bribed monster, the monster becomes hostile again. Also, all ignoring-bribed, nearby monsters become hostile. Followers just demand more pay next time.
  • The score for that branch is reduced.
  • Prompt before attacking bribed monsters.
borsuk: Bribing humans in Vaults is problematic, as there as so few of them. It sounds so niche — just Vault Guards? They have low MR, are easy to run/teleport from. I used to take care of them with teleportation, but Scroll of Fear does the job better and cheaper.
dpeg: Bribing in Vaults would affect humans everywhere. I know that's less interesting than other branches. On the other hand, in V:8 you are guaranteed to have this guard band around you. If you bribe Vaults, you could turn V:8 upside down with your mercenaries. We can also reflect the relative weakness of humans by having Vault bribes last longer/do more. For example, humans could be particularly cheap to bribe/keep.
dpeg: There should be special speech. E.g. a bribed orc hitting another orc wouldn't use the standard orc speech, but rather say someting like Don't take it personal, brother, I am getting good pay for this., Three more and I can retire. etc.
nyaa: a possibility to bribe separate monsters (including those in the main dungeon) would be nice too
I've been trying to come up with a model where you don't want to (have to) bribe individual monsters. This will be annoying (interface and otherwise). Rather, how about being able to bribe Dungeon as well? — dpeg 2010-09-28 15:05
I love the idea of bribing, but is there any reason that the power has to bribe the entire branch at once? I think it has more promise as a power that would attempt to enslave every enemy in sight, with a cost in gold based on the types of enemies being enslaved and the current tension. In one instance, you could beat on a lone orc warlord until he's almost dead, then conscript him into your service with your sword at his throat for pocket change. In another instance, you could descend to vaults:8 and immediately recruit two dozen vault guards into an army of mercenaries in a single turn, but it'll cost you your whole war chest. Allies recruited in this way wouldn't battle if you aren't in sight: after all, they're just hired help, and without supervision they just lean on their swords and shoot the breeze. After X amount of turns their contracts run out and they turn neutral, but they'll keep following you around; during this time you can use the power again to renew their contract (with a new cost based on the tension of the present situation). If you don't renew after enough turns have passed, they turn hostile. For an extra twist, perhaps some enemies enslaved in this way would eventually reach a threshold where, after being paid a certain amount of gold for their services (likely having extended their contract several times), they retire and refuse to be re-recruited and simply leave the dungeon without attacking the player. More importantly, however, removing the branch distinctions reduces complexity, cleans up the interface, and eliminates the risk of people using this power to trivialize certain branches. Adding tension to the cost calculation also creates more tactical dilemmas. — wensleydale 2010-10-01 10:50
I think you (Wensleydale and nyaa) didn't understand where I was coming from. It was precisely my goal to make bribing unlike a spell (or most other abilities). I don't want players to spend money in sight of certain monsters and thereby possibly affecting them, for a number of reasons: (a) it is more of the same (similar to enslavement, confusion, Zin Recite…); (b1) if it does not work reliably, it will be annoying whenever it fails (as the money is spent); (b2) if it does work reliably (as proposed above), it is a huge balancing problem (you can pick up allies for very little investment: choose between ally and kill); © it makes bribery an ever-present tactical choice (of which there are many), whereas my proposal tries to make (choice of branches to sink gold into) a strategical choice, of which we have less; (d) it does not clean up the interface: having to use the ability like a spell requires much more input than just specifying a branch in some prompt; (e) it does not evoke the flavour I want: instead of giving money to some fellow in the dungeon, you are buying the system: you just throw out the cash, and traitors will inevitably appear.
I thought about bribery for quite some time and am convinced that doing it globally is a good idea. — dpeg 2010-10-16 00:11

I really like this ability in concept. In my playtesting though, there were some rough spots. In my run, I bribed Shoals and then Vaults. It turned out Shoals is perhaps the single worst branch to bribe, both because of low bribe-susceptibility monsters and relatively low number of monsters generated. Snake may have the same problem but looking at the numbers in the code, Nagas seem more bribable at least. This seems a problem to me because other people may try to bribe Shoals and end up thinking it's a useless ability. Bribing Vaults was fun though, the only problem being that I ran out of bribe money before V:5. Knowing that, I may not have started bribing until I was in, say, V:3.

And that's perhaps the crux of the problem I see most with Bribe Branch. It really requires knowing a lot of things about how each branch works, how many monsters generate in each, and how bribable each type is. It would be nice if all these things can be communicated to the player in-game, or else to smooth out the Bribe function so these differences matter less. I don't have any ideas here though. — DracheReborn 2014-05-22 14:16

Retribution

Only occurs if abandoning the god. Retribution does not time out; it goes down when the following effects occur:

  • Curse of Gozag: if the player is about to pick up a consumable item, it turns into gold (a nominal sum only). Items of low value are exempt. Use special messages for food items, potions etc. Might want to turn off autopickup during Gozag retribution. Reduces severity.
  • Gold to stone: a level with lots of gold (some branch ends or vaults) may be chosen (when entering it). If so, replace each gold pile on the level by a single stone. (This is more or less flavour only.)
  • Gold mimics: Surround player by eight mimics mimicking gold.
  • Counter-bribe: Gozag pays monster (of the bribable types) in your LOS, making them fight better. (Random good effects like swiftness, rage, etc.)
  • Taxation: Whenever the player picks up gold, the gold god takes some of it. Reduces severity.

Titles

  1. Profligate (penance)
  2. Pauper (<100)
  3. Materlialist (<1000)
  4. Vendee (<5000)
  5. Mogul/Magnate/Tycoon (5000 or more gold carried)

Analysis

The god comes with two tactical and three strategic options (and you should not be able to do all of this together), and an additional conduct.

  • Tactical 1: you perform better when gold is around. The corpses-to-gold rule helps here, hopefully creating interesting tactical situations.
  • Tactical 2: The potion power. Potions have been used here (instead of other or more types of consumables) because they are self-focused and mostly short-term oriented (as opposed to wands or scrolls, say).
  • Strategic 1: getting more shops. This amounts to having access to more items (which is huge), and also to items without needing to do branch ends. It is balanced by the lack of space (levels to put the shops) and money. Note that having more items to look at is not the same as a string of acquirements.
  • Strategic 2: easier branch ends. By bribing a branch, you can attack it earlier and with less risk (i.e. less use of resources). In Zot, you can (partially) offset the threat of draconian packs.
  • Strategic 3: You can acquire followers which will level and be permanent. On the other hand, you will have to pay them all the time, so it is quite different to other forms of ally play.
  • Conduct: no corpses to eat. In particular, Sp and Vp have a better time with the god, and Tr, Og, Ce a harder one, and Gh might be impossible — that is okay.

This god is a parable on how money works (and always did): if you pay enough, most will gladly look away when you slay their neighbours. If you add some more money, they will even slay the neighbour themself.

Comments

Heya Hammerbro, this is joe from livermore, I'm guessing you're the hammerbro I know ;) By some bizarre coincidence we ended up thinking of the same general god idea and proposing it with a bunch of identical ideas, mine over here https://crawl.develz.org/tavern/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=3086. Anyways, here's some things that I think need to be addressed with this god:

1)Okay this one's not really a big problem, just a point here… The entrance fee actually penalizes the greedy, since they would have spent their gold already. And since early worshippers would be getting it back really quickly from corpse-to-gold, all it does is make it impossible for people to switch TO the god in a normal game (obviously not true for pan scummers, but since you can't bribe a ziggurat they don't count).

But a player will know in advance if they want to go Gozag or not. If so, don't spend money in advance. For changing gods later, the formula is not fiendishly hard: you just cannot expect to spend all your money and then turn to Gozag. Have to plan a bit in advance. — dpeg 2013-03-27 15:04

2)This god's lack of piety mildly promotes scumming, which is kind of ironic since a greedy god should force players to wantonly search for gold. Personally I think there should be a RAPIDLY declining piety, that gains only with finding/producing gold, whose only purpose is to boot you out if you don't get enough. Think xom boredom. While it's true players can be screwed by the rng or get too much in orc mines (lots of gold and even more corpses), this is easily fixed by starting with piety, and giving it a normal piety cap (while in abyss, piety loss slows dramatically).

3)Like some of the other commenters, I also don't like bribing whole branches. The only god that makes a whole branch easy is jiyva, and I honestly think even that needs to be changed, as it makes the god only useful for speedruns. Being able to choose the branch makes it even worse. I think the fears of it making too similar to enslavement are unwarranted. Try this:

a) You can only bribe a monster with (HD + XP/1000)less than (max(5,YourLevel)) and non-animal intelligence. Attempts to bribe someone too strong can be cancelled (“He doesn't look suggestible!”)

b) Bribery costs (HD^(1.7?) + 10) gold with (HD*1.6)% chance of being resisted. If resisted, cannot be bribed again.

c) You may instead try “Greater Bribe” with cost ((HD^2.5) + 30) for an irresistable bribe, but the monster must still qualify under conditions of part a. Note this is a lot of gold (~200 for a dragon, ~400 for a stone giant)

d) Bribed monsters cost a small amount of gold over time (HD/2 every 100 turns?). It would behoove you to get some killed off when you don't need them.

e) Monsters can be “fired” but will always go berserk on you. Really think about firing a stone giant first!

> Your proposal precisely contains some of the problems I want to avoid! For example, chance for bribery to depend on HD — this may be realistic, but it's not fun: nobody is interesting in bribing plain orcs, you'll want high level orcs. What's more, dependance on HD means that players will look up monsters which are sentient and have a good HD/threat ratio. Next, bribing as proposed here would work just like pacification (including the lesser/greater variation!) or so many of the hexes. — dpeg 2013-03-27 15:04

4) Gold-from-corpse probably shouldn't be based on weight, or Vaults becomes just way too powerful, with yaks and giants galore. Or maybe it'd work with just massively tweaked numbers (instead of rat = 2 dragon = 100, rat = 10 Dragon = 20). Honestly, just literally turning X potential chunks to 4*X gold might work, you have your randomness already in place since different size gives somewhat random chunks.

Anyways that's it for now! Also sorry for the lack of wiki code, there doesn't seem to be a guide the necessary syntax, and I can't seem to get the the normal comment/signature working. -greepish

Edit: One last thing. Corpse-to-gold is great, but this is going to have some EXTREMELY sensitive balance issues, far and a way more than corpse sacrifice. Normally getting “Too many corpses” with a god is not an issue, the gain from excess corpse sacrifice only gives some gifts or something. But corpses are this gods' entire means to abilities. Consider how MASSIVELY a difference being a mummy is from say a ghoul. Even rings of sustenance would make a massive change! I think corpse-to-gold would probably have to be toned down and another minor method of gaining gold be used as well, but I can't think of any. Item-to-gold obviously wouldn't work. -greepish

Wensley's Proposal

Here's an alternative idea for a gold god. It's loosely based on the ideas presented above, but much more extensive. More importantly, I believe that its thematic flavor is superb. Not only does it present a god who is defined by something more than a game abstraction (“mercantilism” rather than “gold”), it also helps to reveal some of Crawl's untold backstory, namely, where did all those shops come from?

I would like to debate the “superb flavour”. Whereas my proposal is about the innate power of gold (it makes people crazy, here: kill better; it allows you to affect the economy; it can buy loyalty), in a subtle way — this is what I meant when alluding to “how money works” —, your proposal is about a much more direct comparison of what gold does in Crawl.
Why should players be encouraged to buy shops blind, even when they don't need the items? I am not saying that my Potion Petition idea is flawless (I do believe that Duplication, Call Merchant, Bribe Branch are very good powers), but I think that the statues (way shrines) are less thematic and more hassle (both code and in using: think luring monsters all the way to the shrine). The flavour idea of Potion Petition is that you can buy anything, provided you pay the price demanded by the market.
And I don't think that the whole debt mechanic will work too well. How are players going to learn how much debt is good? Why is there a need for debt when you will collect more and more money anyway? How to balance the cash collectors? You don't want them to kill early debtors right away, but they need to be a threat even to late game debtors. Now, all of this can be done, but I see neither the flavour nor the gameplay gain.
Sorry to sound so negative, but I let this sink in for a while. As always, there's gold to be found… some very nice ideas in there. — dpeg 2010-10-16 00:11

All these ideas are extremely tentative, but I feel like it's fairly balanced regardless. The real problem is that there's probably too many of them. :P Feel free to give feedback on any part of this section. — wensleydale 2010-10-01 23:30

God Description

Croesus the Entrepreneur
The patron deity of merchants and businessmen the world over, Croesus is revered
as the god of commerce and wealth. Possessed of a keen entrepreneurial intellect,
Croesus exhorts his followers to take risks and travel the world in pursuit of 
new markets. His prime commandment decrees that wealth unspent is wealth wasted,
and Croesus rewards his followers for destroying creatures that seek only to 
hoard wealth, most especially dragons. Devotees of Croesus are granted measures
of protection throughout their travels and can summon allies to assist in 
transporting their goods.

Altar

A luxurious altar of Croesus
This altar is draped in fineries woven from luscious silk and velvet, the 
fabrics embroidered in glittering golden thread and studded with jewels.

Piety

As the god of wealth and commerce, Croesus appreciates when you spend money, thus keeping the wheels of business turning. Piety increases for the following:

  • Spending gold at a shop
  • Paying wages to your Pack Hauler and Caravan Guards
  • Investing in shops
  • Founding new shops
  • Killing dragons

Piety is lost for the following:

  • Gradual piety loss over time (time is money!)
  • Hoarding your wealth: in addition to the normal piety loss over time, having more than X amount of gold in your inventory causes your piety to decay at a rate proportional to the amount by which you are over X.

Wrath

  • Levies a tax on all gold found while under wrath. Tax applied at the time the gold is discovered. Tax also applies to gold acquirement.
  • Increased prices at all shops.
  • Wayshrines become hostile.
  • Sabotages your inventory, cursing items, dulling weapons, and damaging armor.
  • Will provide your enemies with better equipment, temporarily increasing their AC, accuracy, damage, and branding their weapon
  • Upon renouncing, immediately lose all gold in inventory (might be too harsh?).
  • Curse of Unemployment - when you try to worship another god, you have a high chance of that god rejecting you, and you can't try again with that god for some more time. The chance of being rejected by a god increases over time as long as you stay godless. — b0rsuk 2013-05-23 21:25

Powers

Set Up Shop

Ever wonder where all those shops in the dungeon came from? Intrepid worshipers of Croesus, every one. Shopowners the world over are constantly competing for prime real estate in the dungeon (the reason why, exactly, no-one can seem to fathom). As an intrepid (and extremely risk-taking) entrepreneur, it is your job to scope out locations for shops in new and exotic places. Rules:

  • Ability available at 0 piety
  • Setting up a shop increases piety, with gain depending on desirability of location (see “cost”, below)
  • Only one shop may be opened per branch
  • Shop must be placed on an open floor tile
  • Upon using this ability, the player is presented with the option of three random shops to choose from (shops invisibly and permanently selected for each branch the first time a player enters the branch, these shops represent the only shopowners willing to set up shop here). Each type of shop has a base cost (wand shop costs more than food shop, for example).
  • Shop cost is reduced by discounts, which are dependent upon desirability of location. Branches with runes are more desirable than branches without runes, and the deeper the better. Discount in a branch with a rune or in the realm of zot = (current_depth - 1) / (total_branch_depth - 1). In other words, in shoals 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5, the discount is 0%, 25%, 50%, 75%, and 100%, respectively (thus it never costs anything to set up a shop in a level with a rune). In branches without runes the calculation is similar, except that total_branch_depth is always equal to 7 and the overall discount is halved. So the discount for elf:7 is 50%, while the discount for hive:2 is 8.3%. Shops can be set up anywhere, even in hell. These are *hardcore* shopkeepers we're dealing with.
  • Easter egg: any shop set up in zot:5 will always be a souvenir shop, selling fake orbs of power.

Erect Wayshrine

As the god of traveling merchants, followers of Croesus may call upon a guardian shrine to allow them a bit of respite from the dangers of travel:

  • Available at 0 piety
  • Appears as a golden statue (a yellow “8”)
  • Erecting a wayshrine costs only gold, an amount equal to some absolute amount (for example, 1000) or some percentage of the player's current gold (say, 20%), whichever is higher.
  • Wayshrines may only be placed on open floor tiles.
  • Only one wayshrine may be placed per floor.
  • Wayshrines have no duration, they are permanent until destroyed
  • Upon being placed, the wayshrine emanates a golden aura whose radius is dependent on the player's invocations skill (for a placeholder, say radius of 5 is the max)
  • When the wayshrine is placed, enemies will retreat from the aura and allies will retreat inside it (as per Zin's sanctuary)
  • Enemies with ranged attacks can still attack you from outside the aura, but any damage you suffer is mirrored on the attacker as long as you remain within the aura. Attacks on your allies are not treated similarly. It's not full protection, but in a pinch you can always try to hide behind the statue itself
  • The statue is resilient, but not indestructible. Enemies will not attack the statue itself (unless, possibly, if you are out of range). Attacks on the statue itself are also subject to damage mirroring (no double mirroring in the event of an AOE attack).
  • Any attack you make from within the aura (regardless of target) causes the statue to crumble, leaving nothing behind
  • Regeneration rates of both HP and MP are boosted while within the aura

Invest In Shop

Investing in a shop allows followers of Croesus to exchange gold for piety. It also allows the player of get rid of excess gold, to avoid penalties for gold hoarding.

  • Available at 0 piety.
  • While worshipping Croesus, every shop has an additional item for sale at the bottom of the list: “invest in shop”. Investing is a simple as purchasing this item, and it may be purchased as many times as desired.
  • For stores where all items are fully identified, investing has no effect other than piety gain (and the thanks of the shopkeeper).
  • For stores where not all items are fully identified, investing will gradually reveal properties about each item: cursed/uncursed statues, enchantment levels, randart properties, etc. Insider trading, if you will.

Borrow Gold

This is great.

  • Available at 0 piety (hilariously, bear with me here).
  • At any point, you may pray to Croesus to loan you some cash. Amount of cash received is dependent on invocations level. Costs piety. You may keep praying as many times as you want, though (continue bearing with me).
  • As long as you owe debt to Croesus, you are under the closest thing that he has to penance. All gold that you find will be taxed at a rate dependent on your current piety (very low tax rate at max piety, 100% at 0 piety). Gold is taxed as soon as you discover it, or as soon as you acquire it in the case of scroll of acquirement. Once you have repaid your debt, the pseudo-penance is ended.
  • At any point you wish, you may visit Croesus' altar and pray to donate all gold in your inventory towards paying off your debt, or, if you have more gold than your debt, only what you owe is deducted.
  • As soon as you borrow money from Croesus, a debt counter begins counting down. The length of this counter is dependent on your piety (very long for high piety, 1 turn for 0 piety).
  • If your debt counter gets to zero, your lose some piety and the counter is reset with a new duration based on your new piety. Furthermore, a hostile Collections Agent is spawned.
  • Collections Agents will attack you in melee. As long as you have gold in your inventory, their strikes will not damage your HP. Instead, their hits will reduce your gold by some amount, reducing your debt by an equal amount.
  • If you are out of gold and your debt is not yet paid, the Collections Agent's attacks will begin to damage your HP. As long as your debt is unpaid and the agent remains alive, it will attack you.
  • Killing the agent awards no XP and the agent leaves no corpse and no gold. Upon the death of the Collections Agent, your debt counter is reduced. If the Collections Agent is still alive by the time the debt counter resets but the agent is not in your line of sight, it will be teleported to your side no matter where you are. Along with the new collections agent, of course.
  • Collections agents are not pushovers.
  • Renouncing Croesus does not stop the effects of debt from occurring. You will pay, or you will fight, or you will die.
  • Yes, this power is, in fact, designed to enable you to do infinite ziggurats without worrying about the entry fee, as long as you don't mind an unending legion of collections agents send to forcibly collect your ever-mounting debt (challenge game!).

Gold From Kills

After killing an enemy, there is a chance to spawn gold in the square they were occupying. This happens independently from “Gold From Corpses”, below. The chance to spawn gold is based on your piety, and the amount spawned is based on your invocations. Available at 0 piety. This is the bread-and-butter method of gold acquisition for followers of Croesus.

Gold From Corpses

Unlike the proposal listed above, corpses are not automatically converted into gold (somewhat regrettably so). Instead, praying will turn all corpses in sight into piles of gold, amount dependent on the HD of the corpse and your invocations skill. Think Fedhas, but with gold (although it probably(?!) won't work on zombies). Available at * piety.

Why not automatically turn all corpses into gold? There's more of a tradeoff: Croesus's powers reward having a substantial amount of gold in the bank and encourage the player to spend it often. Ideally, players will starve themselves for gold without starvation being foisted upon them. :)

Sense Gold

A passive effect, detects all gold on the level. Ideally this would even be able to see inside secret rooms and vaults even when other methods cannot (you can't hide gold from the merchant god!). Might perhaps work even in the labyrinth (there are easier ways of divining where the center of the labyrinth is, after all). Available at * piety.

Caravan Guards

At one point or another, every traveling merchant stumbles across a pack of ruffians bent on pilfering his wares. But most ruffians know better than to mess with a follower of Croesus. Caravan Guards are summonable guardians, hell-bent on protecting their master at all cost.

  • Available at 2-star piety.
  • Caravan Guards don't work like normal summons. Instead of using the ability once to summon a single ally, the ability “Call Caravan Guards” is a toggle. When it is toggled on, Caravan Guards begin spawning as per the demonspawn demonic guardian mutation, and will continue spawning until the tension of the scene is even.
  • Invocations skill determines how quickly each guard is summoned, and how quickly they are replaced when they die.
  • Once the tension is reduced, guards begin slowly despawning.
  • If the ability is toggled off, all guards despawn immediately.
  • Caravan Guards are only a defensive tool: they will prioritize remaining within sight of their master over all else, may ignore orders to attack, and will never move out of line of sight voluntarily. If a guard is out of sight for too long, it will despawn.
  • As each guard is summoned, some gold is deducted from the player's inventory. Every X turns (where X is a fairly small number) their wages must be paid, deducting more gold from the player. Paying these wages pleases Croesus.
  • If wages cannot be paid, all guards disappear immediately.
  • If piety falls below two stars while this ability is active, guards will simply stop respawning.

Bribe

Sometimes a salesman must know how to grease the wheels of business. dpeg's “Bribe Branch” proposal (listed above) would work great here thematically, but I also still support my revision of bribing (listed in response to dpeg's). Either way, it's available at 3-star piety.

Golden Armor

Croesus respects that the lives of his followers are worth more than money. Well, some followers, anyway. And they're worth only *slightly* more than money. While activated, Golden Armor functions like a spirit shield, except that instead of draining your MP when you take damage, gold is drained instead. A great emergency button, and a good goldsink that will encourage players to starve themselves. Costs only a small amount of gold to activate, making it a good way to train invocations as well. Ability duration dependent on invocations.

Pack Hauler

A good salesman is never caught short of stock. To deal with the task of moving large amounts of product, Croesus will provide followers with a Pack Hauler.

  • Available at 4-star piety
  • A Pack Hauler is essentially a stash with legs.
  • Pack Haulers can carry infinite weight, but have only 52 item slots (or infinite items slots, if we're feeling generous)
  • Pack Haulers have a built-in conservation effect to protect your potions and scrolls.
  • Summoning your Pack Hauler works as a toggle: without a Pack Hauler you have the “Hire Pack Hauler” ability. With a Pack Hauler, you have the “Dismiss Pack Hauler” ability.
  • Pack Haulers cost X gold immediately upon being hired, and Y more gold every Z turns. These are the Pack Hauler's wages, and paying them gives you a small amount of piety with Croesus. Pack Haulers are expected to be around for the long-term, so Z is fairly large.
  • Pack Haulers move as swiftly as you do, even if you are a hasted spriggan, although they will not blink or teleport with you. They cannot swim nor fly, but you probably don't want your stash over deep water or lava anyway.
  • When a Pack Hauler is hired, the ability “Recall Pack Hauler” becomes available, which returns your Pack Hauler to your side, but costs piety and gold.
  • Once a Pack Hauler is hired, the player may use the “Haul Items” ability, which allows the player to target any square and instructs the Pack Hauler to pick up all items in that square.
  • While a Pack Hauler is carrying items, the player may use the “Drop Hauled Items” ability to instruct the Pack Hauler to drop all items on the ground where it is standing. This only works if the Pack Hauler is within sight.
  • The player may fire projectiles through the Pack Hauler without penalty.
  • The Pack Hauler is not invincible. He's pretty tough (HP, AC, and EV scaling with your invocations), but he cannot attack. If he dies, all items fall in the square where he was standing and you suffer a piety loss.
  • Enemies will not attack the Pack Hauler if you are in sight, attempting to attack you instead (if you are invisible and the enemy cannot see invisible, they will prefer to attack him).
  • If you drop below four-star piety, the Pack Hauler will persist until the next time his wages are to be paid, at which time he vanishes (unless you can raise your piety before then).
  • If the Pack Hauler's wages come due and you cannot pay them, he vanishes immediately.
  • Any time the Pack Hauler is dismissed, quits, or is banished to the abyss, all his items immediately fall in the square where he was standing.
  • Pray that a hellephant does not trample your Pack Hauler into a pool of lava.

The Traveling Salesman's Walk Of Briskness

All good merchants know that time is money, and time spent traveling is money wasted. At 5-star piety, the player receives a permanent swiftness effect that lasts as long as the piety level is maintained.

Bazaar/Treasure Trove Entry

At max piety, praying at Croesus' altar will present the player with a once-per-game exclusive choice:

  • Will immediately transport the player to a bazaar, or
  • Will provide any items that the player needs to enter a locked treasure trove, with the gold price of the items provided deducted from the player's wallet

Comments

I may not be the best person to comment, since I naturally like the first proposal (by hammerbroish and me) a lot. So just some quick comments: The piety rules would work (although the dragons are quite artificial at this point). There are way too many abilities. Setting up shops is interesting, but it is also a very limited way to gain piety (not so many branches). Do you really mean that shops in Hell or Slime should work? The Statue is an interesting idea, but since it is stationary (unlike Zin's sanctuary), it might lead to problematic gameplay (players luring monster across the whole level to the statue). Investing into shops is a bit meta-gamey (since shops don't restock and you just spend gold that'd otherwise have hurt your piety). Not worse than offering gold to Zin, I guess (where I was motivated by practises of the Christian churches, of course). Borrow gold can easily turn out problematic: you probably will want the agents to become stronger and stronger, otherwise it'll be definitely scummable. Regarding gold for corpses, I believe that a conduct will only work it is mandatory: as soon as it is voluntary (as in your proposal), you may trap one player or another; but before long, the system will be played optimally. I think the caravans are over the top, not really necessary, against other flavour in the game (shops simply don't restock, so what need for caravans). I also happen to think that the idea of continually spending money for mercenaries (as in the original bribe) is a more interesting approach for combining money and allies, but I am obviously biased. The last two powers are not so good, compared with all the stuff you present before: why slap Swiftness onto this god? And single entrance to a bazaar/trove is much weaker than the other one-off abilities of gods, also thematically. — dpeg 2010-10-02 02:12
Right, I think I kind of went a little overboard with excitement there. :) I really do like the flavor of a lot of these powers, even if they're overpowered or misguided. And the point of all this was to brainstorm new flavorful ideas for the gold god, since I find the current proposal a little lackluster. I'm glad you liked taxation, at least. :P — wensleydale 2010-10-02 06:21
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dcss/brainstorm/god/propose/gold.txt · Last modified: 2014-05-22 14:35 by DracheReborn
 
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