ToME: the Tales of Maj'Eyal

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 27, 2011 11:25 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:35 am
Posts: 704
Since I now have some time for Angband tweaking again, I'm giving the classes a once-over. I'd like to know which ones people think deserve to be changed, and how.

For my part I'll list some of my own observations...

Monks: Barehanded combat is kind of nice, but as far as magic they just have Temporal, Meta, and Mind, none of which are that useful at a 0.5 multiplier. I'm thinking I should maybe give them something else instead of those. Nature, Divination, and Conveyance perhaps? The big issue here is that more than one school doesn't get you that far when they're all at a 0.5 multiplier. A multiplier of 1.0 might work, but that's more than what dedicated mages get.

Rangers: Same problem. They at least get good schools, but not at a good multiplier; and the multipliers for the archery subskills aren't so hot either. The result is rather less than impressive.

I think the root of the problem is the schools system itself, but that's not amenable to fixing (at least until AH ports it all to C++). Until then, I'm open to suggestions on dealing with these classes.

Oh, also a thought on Mindcraft. I'm thinking of removing it and pushing some of the spells - probably Adrenaline, Mindwave, and Psychic Drain - into the Mind school to make it more useful. Think that'd be a good idea?


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PostPosted: Sun Feb 27, 2011 11:45 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:35 am
Posts: 704
One other thing...

I've been unsuccessful playing school magic users for a long time, and I think I just realized why - spells are not very efficient. For instance, Healing at level 41 costs 43 SP and heals 43%, with no curing of conditions. Compare Holy Word in V, which heals 1000 HP, cures, damages all evil monsters in LoS... And costs 30 points. Between this and skill point expenditure, magic users - especially jack-of-all-trades ones - tire out really fast and have zilcho melee capability... Unless they have access to Mindcraft.

I'm thinking I could change this by making Magic skill count for more SP, but I'm not sure if that would be unbalancing. Maybe if I killed Mindcraft.


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PostPosted: Mon Feb 28, 2011 5:54 pm 
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Spiderkin

Joined: Sat Mar 18, 2006 12:48 pm
Posts: 482
FWIW I do kind of agree that some of the spells are... lackluster. I don't think ToME has ever really been balanced (nor am I convinced that it necessarily should be).

Mindcraft does seem a bit odd, but I do like the idea of a bookless caster.

I think the spell schools need some reworking... but that's wait until after my porting work is done... I've started tackling spells now. I'm basically going for a straight port since that's mostly just mechanical work for refactoring afterwards. Hopefully things will get more amenable to modification :).

Anyway, just some random thoughts...


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 5:31 pm 
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Reaper

Joined: Sun Jan 26, 2003 11:49 pm
Posts: 1715
Location: West Virginia
I have normally played 1) sorcerors, 2) warriors of various kinds, 3) antimagic swordmasters, and 4) alchemists. I have also tried all the other classes but I don't enjoy them as much. I have put significant time into geomancers, possessors, thaumaturgists, and mindcrafters.

I don't find any of the spells in either the Mind or Meta schools to be useful. Combining Mind and Mindcraft seems like a good idea to me. I guess that the Mind spells could be very useful to a Summoner, a class that I find totally boring.

The big problem with Monks is getting resistances. Even a death mold is going to have holes. Lygrog monks in Theme are unbelievably powerful, even though they have lousy hp. Nothing can hit or damage them. Of course if they worship Melkor nothing gets more than one round of attacks in anyways.

For a sorceror, the healing spells are great. 43 mana is not a big deal, and 43% healing makes a difference if you only have 800 hp. Restore and Regeneration are also very useful. When I am in the Void I am always regenerating and cast Healing frequently.

My play style is that the Knowledge, Translocation, Healing, Fire, and Earth schools have multiple useful spells. Temporal, Air, Udun, and Water each have one great spell. Mind and Meta are a waste of time. I generally don't bother with any of the god spells.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 8:43 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:35 am
Posts: 704
Hmm.

My initial thought on the schools is that they should be more like separate realms - not totally independent, or with too many duplicated spells, but rather with enough overlap that a character could specialize in one or two without being hugely handicapped. But that would be a huge gameplay change, and not feasible until the C++ port is complete.

A better idea at this point IMHO would be putting the Mindcraft spells in Mind, and stripping out the attack spells. Basically make Mind a source of utility spells for more melee-oriented characters. So it could look like this:

1. Precognition (level 1)
Nerf it so it only detects monsters and traps, and never grants telepathy.

2. Displacement (level 5)
Teleports you up to 20 spaces. At higher levels lets you specify a direction.

3. Psychometry (level 10)
Identifies an object, like the Mindcraft spell.

4. Character Armor (level 15)
Raises AC and grants resistances, like the Mindcraft spell.

5. Adrenaline Channeling (level 25)
Same as the Mindcraft spell, gives +(skill / 10) speed, heroism, and berserk at high levels. Should heal the player enough to compensate for the extra hitpoints from berserk/heroism, but not enough to be worth casting repeatedly in combat.

I figure all of these should have constant cost, as with the Mindcraft spells.

Perhaps I'll start working on that, and see how it goes...


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 9:56 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:35 am
Posts: 704
Or, the other thing could be to just give some of the "half caster" classes access to Mindcraft at a 0.5 or so multiplier. Not sure if that would be good or if it would be overpowered. I guess I'll make two branches and see which works better.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 01, 2011 10:31 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Tue Dec 13, 2005 12:35 am
Posts: 704
Well the answer seems to be that my Mind school changes will crash the game whenever a Tome of the Mind is generated, due to some kind of string handling bug in object1.c. I'm going to see how monks, rangers, and rogues work with Mindcraft.

Further thoughts:
- I could remove the Magic Mapping/Wizard Light component of Precog completely.
- Minor Displace could become directed instead of controlled teleport, with a 25 space limit.
- Adrenaline could have the healing effect removed.

That's about as far as I want to nerf Mindcraft, otherwise priests would be too helpless IMO.


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