ToME: the Tales of Maj'Eyal

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 Post subject: New dungeon designs
PostPosted: Fri Dec 18, 2009 11:25 pm 
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Halfling

Joined: Mon May 08, 2006 12:45 am
Posts: 85
Location: Seattle
One of the major aspects of ToME will always be exploring dungeons. That in mind, the dungeons could stand to be a bit more interesting. Right now they basically use two different general strategies (rooms+corridors, and arena levels), with varying kinds of terrain. Some dungeons also use a 2x2 "pixel" instead of the 1x1 standard. The only dungeons that I can think of offhand that are notably different are the Labyrinth, Heart of the World, and the Void, and I'm not certain on the Void as I've only seen it once and my stay lasted about twenty rounds. So here's some suggestions that I'm just tossing out there. They're likely horribly flawed but if they spark useful ideas, their job is done. :)

* Bulkheads. The map is composed of a bunch of small square rooms with automatic doors between them. When you enter a room, doors to adjacent rooms open; when you leave a room, doors in the previous room shut. It should be clear which rooms connect to which to make traveling less painful.

* Boat. The player is placed on a 3x3 platform in the middle of a large body of liquid (water, lava, acetone, whatever). Depending on where the player stands on the platform, the boat moves. The speed of the boat is presumably independent of the speed of the player, and could be fast, slow, erratic, etc.

* Modular vault. We make a whole bunch of mini-vaults with defined shapes and edges, and the game pieces them together like a jigsaw puzzle. Could easily be combined with the "bulkheads" approach.

* Giant tree. Passageways are large branches, with open space between them that can be seen through but not passed/dug through. "Rooms" are relatively wider spots where two branches are close enough to pass from one to the other; such intersections would be somewhat rare. Flying units could "walk" through open space, of course.

* Giant vault. An entire dungeon that's one huge vault with staircases between levels; basically a sequence of fixed levels.

* Moving walls. The dungeon periodically generates new corridors and removes old ones. The player must be certain to be in a room when this happens!

* Giant sandworms. The dungeon is continually being carved out by massive creatures digging through the sand, which then falls in a short distance behind them. The player must stay close behind the creatures, or have some special way to move through the sand themselves. Killing the sandworms is of course not recommended.

* Mixed type. This is a general concept -- just mix several different algorithms together. Partition the level up and use separate algorithms for each, so you could get a level where half of it is an arena level and the other half an ocean, for example.

The trick with alternate dungeon rules is finding a system that's interesting to play instead of being annoying. For example, I've found that trying to travel through FAangband's natural corridors is a bit annoying: since they're wide and irregularly-shaped, the "run" command doesn't work very well.


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 Post subject: Re: New dungeon designs
PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2009 12:39 am 
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Reaper

Joined: Sun Jan 26, 2003 11:49 pm
Posts: 1715
Location: West Virginia
The Void is really just sort of a combination of the standard room/corridor and arena level strategies.

These are good ideas. A complimentary approach is that used extensively in Theme- the same basic structure but more challenging terrain. Some of the Theme dungeons are dangerous even for high level characters.


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 Post subject: Re: New dungeon designs
PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2009 6:43 am 
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Reaper

Joined: Wed Dec 12, 2007 12:21 am
Posts: 2257
Location: New Zealand
Agreed, these are very good ideas!

Question: Where are they implemented? In the module? Which means the module developer can do them... or in the T-engine? Which means it must be coded in some way...

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Jon.


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 Post subject: Re: New dungeon designs
PostPosted: Sat Dec 19, 2009 1:53 pm 
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Sher'Tul

Joined: Mon Jul 07, 2003 5:22 pm
Posts: 1461
Location: Finland
Dungeon generators can be implemented in both C and Lua. (To be coming in next version: wilderness area generators. The dungeon-style wildernesses currently work in my development version but have some significant bugs that make them currently unusable for real play. Which reminds me - I should stop playing unrelated computer games and get back to bug fixing. I haven't tested the Lua script option for wilderness generators, but I based it on known-good code.) I haven't looked at it myself, but Bone to be Wild should have a custom generator in Lua for its rooms which you can take a look at.

New generators can be added to the engine, but they should preferably be generic enough that more than one module is interested in them.

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Zothiqband -- still an Angband variant.


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 Post subject: Re: New dungeon designs
PostPosted: Sat Jan 23, 2010 1:45 am 
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Wyrmic

Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 12:08 am
Posts: 233
Location: California
A thread popped up at oook that has talked some about terrain, which seems relevant to to the discussion of dungeons since terrain tends to be an important instrument to give dungeons flavor in ToME. While a lot of the suggestions have gone beyond what might make sense to include in Vanilla, it might be worth considering if their might be any terrain changes that would make sense for the ToME 3.0 release.

http://angband.oook.cz/forum/showthread ... #post29256

some of these are my ideas, and some came from the thread above

What if:
ICE:
*The tactics/explore setting affected movement on ice (and monsters could this intelligently too). There could be a benefit to not running around incautiously.

*Missing with a melee weapon has a chance to throw you off balance, forfeiting any remaining multiple blows

*not wearing boots causes cold damage/prevents regen while

*climbing sets = boots of stability on ice.

*Doubled range of infravision (more contrast between background and warm-bodied creature).

*potion shattering should be really rare (it's not a fun game mechanic imho)

LAVA:
*Less chance to burn stuff in pack in shallow lava
*More chance to ruin footwear
*Have only in appropriate environment (No more lava princess quests in BD or Mirkwood, make Alchemist quest like a lost temple quest in the mountains)

SNOW/ASH/GRASS
Show footprints (player and AI)- Intelligent AI might follow these, hopefully leading to tactical use of summons to lead AI to certain areas.
chance to hide objects unless detected
traps harder to find

More STEAM/VAPORS/CLOUD effects
Can temporarily block line of site
Other effects (scalding, very short term halucination from volcanic gases, chance to fail reading scroll)

Edit- not necessarily dungeons, but would be cool if terrains could seasonally change- maybe make destinations that you can only get to certain times of year.


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 Post subject: Re: New dungeon designs
PostPosted: Sat Jan 23, 2010 2:58 am 
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Reaper

Joined: Sun Jan 26, 2003 11:49 pm
Posts: 1715
Location: West Virginia
I suggest trying the Theme module if you haven't already done so. She did a great job with different terrain effects.


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 Post subject: Re: New dungeon designs
PostPosted: Sat Jan 23, 2010 6:32 pm 
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Wyrmic

Joined: Thu Dec 20, 2007 12:08 am
Posts: 233
Location: California
Yottle wrote:
I suggest trying the Theme module if you haven't already done so. She did a great job with different terrain effects.


The mac version of Theme is broken unfortunately (or at least incompatible with the most current ToME version). I suppose it would be worth installing ToME on my winXP emulator just to try Theme.


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