Spawn Frequency Discussion

Name dcss:feedback:monster:frequency
Summary Feedback regarding the frequency (not depth, though frequency at depth is fine) of monsters
Added by minmay
Added on 2010-09-15 03:46

While playing I've noticed that some monsters seem to appear too often, and some seem to hardly ever be seen at all. This page is a place to collect all of that, and hopefully tweak the monster weights appropriately.

I think monsters that appear too often are always annoying, but rare monsters can add some nice variety to the game, in an “oh cool, I haven't seen a lindwurm in a while” sort of way. — danei 2010-10-08 22:56

Single branches


  • Orc packs are too frequent in the later Dungeon. After you've done Lair, only high-level orcs are a threat, and they don't show up until way later (at which point they aren't a threat either). I think frequency of orc packs past D:8 or so should be reduced, and the frequency of higher-level orcs past D:14 or so should be increased.
  • Yaktaurs show up too much in the really late dungeon (past D:22 or so). Then again, they are a good source of bolts for the few characters using crossbows.
  • Kobold demonologists are almost never seen. When they are, they aren't dangerous, but that's a seperate issue.


  • Elephants are all over this branch in trunk. They're great monsters, but when you're fighting them almost all the time they get awfully boring.
    • I agree. They seem to be about as common as yaks. — xyblor 2010-09-21 01:34
    • I agree, as well. They seemed to be more common than yaks on my run, but maybe that's because I had a late Lair (D:12). — mrmistermonkey 2010-10-06 03:31
      • I had the same experience, also with a late lair(D:11) — ogaz 2010-10-08 05:17
    • Instead of just reducing elephant frequency, get rid of current elephant spawns and then use them in place of death yaks. There's no gameplay need to have both monsters in the branch and death yaks are less interesting to begin with. Elephants would need to become a bit tougher to keep things completely level, but there's plenty of room to work in between their current stats and dire elephants'. Keep death yaks around for Polyphemus, I guess, but not in lair. — og17 2010-10-08 05:47
      • I don't think we have to get rid of death yaks. First, there are ideas to make (death) yak bands behave more like herds, including stampede. Second, all of hydra, death yaks and elephants are interesting threats in in Lair. Instead of the current system with uniform chances, there could be several monster distributions, so that you could get a Lair emphasising frogs, or yaks etc. I didn't note too many elephants in my Lair encounter, but that may not mean much. — dpeg 2010-10-08 23:17
        • I don't see how lair would be improved by randomly drawing from a small subset of enemies, or how death yaks are “interesting threats” like elephants and hydras (etc), especially as any yak herd behavior would also be fitting for elephants. — og17 2010-10-09 20:09
        • It seems more logical to me to instead have each floor randomly favor one of frogs, yaks, elephants+some other animal that's a bit smaller (like the yak floor isn't all death yaks), or the other lair monsters (this choice being 33% or 50% likely). Make whatever the floor is set to spawn frequently enough that you can easily tell “oh this is a yak floor” and it makes a difference, and make death yaks, blink frog packs, elephants and hydras only spawn on their respectively favorable floors. That way floors favoring the thing you're not good at fighting are significantly more dangerous than other floors, and might even be worth skipping. With eight floors you won't see each floor in every game but will also not see four frog floors in the same game. Lair 8 might be exempt. — brickman 2010-12-15 05:17
          • This isn't much better than themed lair, as the mix of different monsters offering different threats is what makes the game work - enemies complement each other. Some monster families are diverse enough to do this on their own, but lair beasts aren't (and shouldn't be) among them, so focusing floors on them would make the branch less interesting. This sort of inconsistent difficulty isn't good for the player's first branch anyway, and they shouldn't be able to so neatly bypass entire sets of currently problematic monsters either. Lair works well as it is, I think, and themes shouldn't spread past vaults. — og17 2010-12-15 06:29
            • Fair enough. It was meant to be an improvement on his idea, not a suggestion in its own right. — brickman 2010-12-15 07:57
      • I like the Death Yaks too, even though elephants' knockback ability makes them that much more interesting. Distribution idea sounds interesting, similar to what I had in mind for Pan levels (them being clearly themed). — evktalo 2010-10-09 11:54
  • yeah. so can we lower the frequency of elephants already? Fighting three packs of these every lair level is as tedious as fighting the endless amounts of slime creatures and ugly things in D:13-D:27/Vaults. Why do elephants appear in D and vaults by the way? — st 2010-11-29 18:24

Multiple branches

  • Skeletal warriors are too frequent in the Hells and, to a lesser extent, the Abyss. In the Abyss they might actually be dangerous on occasion, but they're still seen too often. In the Hells they're generally just annoying.
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dcss/brainstorm/monster/concept/frequency.txt · Last modified: 2011-12-22 18:50 by XuaXua
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