Name dcss:brainstorm:magic: tornado
Summary Ideas for Tornado
Added by minmay
Added on 2011-02-07 19:23

Tornado has just been reduced in power: it does less damage and applies a negative spell enhancer for its duration. It has also been restored to pure Air.

The spell is still considered quite overpowered. Some point out that nerfing it further could make people revert to Fire Storm for their level 9 damage needs, but I don't think this is an issue except for ziggurat raiders: Fire Storm is Conj/Fire, Tornado is Air, in the course of a normal game you're not going to be in a situation where you actually choose between the two. — minmay 2011-04-18 17:06

Agreed, if anything it's worse than before. It still lets you kite everything on the screen with near-Firestorm damage. The negative spell enhancer is not a serious disadvantage because you can spend those turns maneuvering your ongoing instant death vortex instead of firing off a popgun. Or if you're a hybrid, use melee attacks.
The only difference now is that it's easy to get it castable by Vaults 3 or so instead of by Zot 1, like Fire or Ice Storm. You can get most of the way there by simply not turning off air magic when you're victory dancing Repel Missiles on the way to Haste. Vehumet will do most of the rest. — koboldlord 2011-04-19 00:11
Vaults 3? Heck, a kenku of Ashenzari can get it before Swamp/Snake. I'm afraid that pure Air is a disaster, I'm very sorry it goes into 0.8 this way. Nerfing damage would put the spell into IOOD's uselessness: huge hunger hit for little gain – ie, useful on a 3-runer but for full games you want Firestorm. I'm pondering simply reverting the Air/Conj → Air change, and I wonder what mental deficiency I had while agreeing to do that. — kilobyte 2011-04-19 00:21
IOOD is nowhere near useless. It's arguably not even underpowered. It's easy to cast (one school), has a long range, can't be resisted or evaded, and does a lot of damage. I don't see why Tornado has to be either too good or too bad, either; Shatter is single-school now and it's neither brokenly overpowered nor useless.
I'm not heavily opposed to making it a conjuration again, but it won't help the fact that once you can actually cast it, it may as well cause 14 runes and the Orb to appear at your feet. Possible nerfs other than flatly reducing damage: make the radius decay like Silence, make it do less damage to large monsters and more to small monsters. — minmay 2011-04-19 15:22

So, Tornado was nerfed again. Quite a bit less damage, but the negative enhancer is gone. I've used it through most of an extended game and it's still the strongest level 9 spell, but doesn't seem too unbalanced. It is still ridiculously good in ziggurats, but are those really a primary balance concern? Also, it moves things around now, which I would like to say is really cool. — minmay 2011-06-24 19:46

I think that it is still ridiculous as pure Air… I see no way other than 1. making it harder to cast – two-school or level 10, the latter would be a power spiral, so I prefer the former, or 2. nerfing damage into Shatter's niche, which is too narrow – and I don't think level 9 spells fit well with 3 rune games. For 0.9, I'd want it Air/Conj, or maybe Air/Tloc but that'd be a strange place. Even without undoing any part of the severe damage nerf – with ridiculous single-school damage in 0.8, it might be good to try swinging to the other side and looking at the results. — kilobyte 2011-06-24 19:57

Throw things around

Tornado moves clouds around, but not monsters or items. It would seem much more like an actual tornado if monsters and items were picked up and thrown around. Players would probably use this to dump monsters into lava, however, and there's the question of how to handle monsters colliding with walls or each other.

Dumping monsters into lava/water is in but very situational. It is somewhat offset by tornado granting temporary levitation, and nearly anything hard enough to survive the full duration being able to fly. However, I see problems with moving items: it would be able to do some things apportation can't do. In Zot:5, you'd rotate away both the orb and all the orb guardians, but I'm still wary. Should I add rotation of items? — kilobyte 2011-06-24 19:57
Collisions could be handled by monster attacking what it hits, or self on hitting wall, with reduced attack chance & power. Similar to trampling? Tornado lifts player over lava while active, so you would have to time it just right to dump monsters. Flying weapons might cause damage a la Tukima's Dance Party, with lower to hit chance & damage. — nubinia 2011-02-07 19:55.
Why not handle moving stuff around via blink code (with the exception that opponents may still be blinked inside the tornado)? That way, monsters don't get dumped into lava. I'm not sure “cycling” monsters in a given clockwise/cc direction would have much impact flavor-wise anyway. — Minced
This not only sounds like it would work with minimal fuss, it sounds like it would be a good way to nerf the spell (randomly scattering the contents of a ziggurat would be very dangerous). It might even be acceptable to blink things over lava/water since it would be too random for the player to control effectively. — minmay 2011-04-18 17:06

How about adding in an element of self-risk? Fire Storm and Ice Storm can both injure or kill the player if you use them carelessly, but Tornado currently does roughly similar damage with no drawback. Even if you use it in a 2×5 tile room, it kills everything in that room very quickly. Perhaps instead of limiting the size of the tornado, those restricting walls should cause the winds to be deflected to damage the player as well.

Another possibility would be to keep the player from taking other actions while the tornado is ongoing. At the moment, you can continue to shoot your other spells or attack with your weapon at a big target while your tornado plays frogs-in-a-blender with all the other targets. If you get tormented a time or two, you can still retreat as normal. If you can't cast or use items while riding your tornado without getting slammed through the nearest wall as it goes out of control, using it casually involves a certain element of risk. — koboldlord 2011-02-27 06:18

Tornado Behavior

porkchop 2011-07-31 13:15

Tornado could really use some chrome if it wants to be different than just another storm spell, it could use different interpretation altogether instead of just trying to balance the damage output. What if the tornado had to take a couple of turns to reach max size and damage while thrashing about and changing directions chaotically. For example something like this based on 4 turns after casting:

  • 1 tile wide smite targeted d6 damage
  • grows to 9 tile, more damage
  • full size could possibly randomly displace items or monsters, max damage
  • shrinks back to 9 tiles w reduced damage

Here are some individual ideas on tornado behavior:

  • random movement/drift. each turn target coordinate shifts random direction
  • forward movement. think tornado attack in a video game, you would cast directly in front of you and it would move in that direction growing bigger each turn
  • spin as vortex. start coordinate would be axis, as it grows, the damage area would spin about clockwise as it grows.
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dcss/brainstorm/magic/spells/tornado.txt · Last modified: 2011-12-21 22:50 by XuaXua
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