ToME: the Tales of Maj'Eyal

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 11:31 am 
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Loremaster

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My 7DRL DataQueen (made in the T-Engine) is now complete. You can download the Windows version here:

http://goo.gl/zsOHUQ

Will have OSX/Linux packages soon, or you can extract the module from the games/modules folder and copy into your ToME installation. I'm looking for feedback on balance and on the score system I've just implemented. Anyone feel like contributing? :) I want to polish the game up a bit more, and daftigod has started doing some awesome tile graphics. Any ideas for improvements are very welcome.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:05 pm 
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Cornac

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Can you give a summary of the module? I'd like to know what I'm getting into beforehand :P


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 5:11 pm 
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Oh, well that's a bit stupid of me to miss out...

DataQueen is a hex-based roguelike about hacking and insects. You don't have HP in the game - instead you die if you get fully surrounded by enemies. Enemies have various different abilities to make this hard to avoid or to make your life difficult in general. The bosses are also all tough cookies.

You move around on a grid of different colours. Green grids give you free movement, letting you position yourself tactically with ease. You create green grids as you move, but enemies eat them up. To advance through the levels you must connect up all the pink grids with green grids and defeat the bosses.

When you attack you perform an effect based on the direction you attack in. You have a "hex wheel" of abilities based on the 6 directions of movement, with different powers assigned to each hex position. Every turn your hex wheel rotates, so you have to think through your moves to take out enemies more easily. As you advance through the game you get new abilities that you can assign to your hex wheel - if you're smart you can set up good multi-turn combos of abilities to wipe out nefarious gridbugs with devastating effect.

You get a score based on how quickly you connect the levels and defeat the bosses.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 19, 2014 7:23 pm 
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Oh yeah, and screenshots:

Image
Image

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 9:57 am 
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Master of Eyal

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Mostly what I already told you on IRC:
- It is quite fun
- At first it wasn't quite evident what the base mechanics are
- Bosses are mean!
- Some more polish and it will be great

Oh and the biggie: it is not uploaded to te4.org!

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 11:18 am 
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darkgod wrote:
- At first it wasn't quite evident what the base mechanics are

I tweaked the intro text to try and make it more obvious, but there are so many "new" things in the game it's hard to infodump the player with it all. Which mechanics were the most obscure? And have you played since the game added score?

Quote:
Oh and the biggie: it is not uploaded to te4.org!

I tried but the MD5 code isn't appearing in the log file when I package it up :-/ The file's here if you can give any hints: http://gamesofgrey.com/games/dataqueen/dataqueen.team

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 21, 2014 3:07 pm 
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Master of Eyal

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It should appear, are you using the latest engine (some old versions had a bug where it was not displayed) and is developer mode on ?

As for the mechanics; the one I missed was that movement was free on green grids. As you can imagine this made the game FAR harder :)

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PostPosted: Sun Mar 23, 2014 5:35 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2013 12:14 am
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I can barely wait to try this out. It looks so... Novel. :)

I look forward to giving feedback on such a promising piece.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 2:01 am 
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Uruivellas

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I definitely recommend this game. To everyone. Everywhere. You won't regret it.

Grey: I noticed what I believe are a few typos. I think I saw three. One in the help tooltip (for the top corner), and two in the help dialogue, in the first two or three paragraphs. Small things, of course. :)

Gameplay-wise, I only made it to the fourth level. Between a huge headache, and some poor investment options (aside: could you consider a confirmation dialogue on the upgrade screen? I would have loved one) I eventually succumbed to the advancing hordes of baby-spiders. I deserved it, I felt. And losing, then feeling that you earned that loss, is probably a good thing. I commend you.

I can therefore only give partial game-feedback. :( I'll start with enemies.
Caterpillars: Am I correct in assuming they destroy every hex around them? Because that would explain where they kept disappearing.
Butterfly's: I hate fighting these. And when I say that, I mean the unique problems it presents are wonderful.
Bosses: These guys, the ones I fought to anyway, are an incredibly varied bunch, and I think that's great. Needing a different strategy for each is just so much better than the standard attack-attack-attack. I, incidentally, lost because I couldn't adapt quick enough. :)

I was going to say that the bumper-attack "))" I think, was overpowered. Then I realized it doesn't actually damage the enemies...
Suffice to say, by the point I reached, nothing ended up seeming overpowered. Although I should have tried for that shield, in hindsight. :)

If you'd like more feedback, I'll be happy to provide. Again, this game is incredibly fun to play. A rich new experience that everyone should try.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 2:22 am 
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The Revanchist wrote:
I definitely recommend this game. To everyone. Everywhere. You won't regret it.

Hah, that's great to hear - thanks :D

Quote:
(aside: could you consider a confirmation dialogue on the upgrade screen? I would have loved one)

I have a pet hate for confirmation dialogues. 99% of the time you chose right, so why double the number of clicks needed? Roguelikes in general punish misclicks/fudge fingers badly, and that's just the way of things as far as I'm concerned. Sorry :P

Quote:
Caterpillars: Am I correct in assuming they destroy every hex around them? Because that would explain where they kept disappearing.

Yup! There are hints to every monster's abilities in their tooltips, but since I was trying to keep everything thematic it's not always clear.

Quote:
Bosses: These guys, the ones I fought to anyway, are an incredibly varied bunch, and I think that's great. Needing a different strategy for each is just so much better than the standard attack-attack-attack. I, incidentally, lost because I couldn't adapt quick enough. :)

Hehe :) The bosses are meant to be the real challenge of the game. Which ones did you get? Grasshopper and Mantis are the worst... (well, apart from the end boss, that's a special type of evil)

Quote:
I was going to say that the bumper-attack "))" I think, was overpowered. Then I realized it doesn't actually damage the enemies...
Suffice to say, by the point I reached, nothing ended up seeming overpowered. Although I should have tried for that shield, in hindsight. :)

Most of the abilities are reasonably powerful in their upgraded form, and some combine exceptionally well together.

Quote:
If you'd like more feedback, I'll be happy to provide. Again, this game is incredibly fun to play. A rich new experience that everyone should try.

Would love more feedback if you get round to playing more. I'd like the score system to be a bit more meaningful perhaps, and it would be good to get an idea of what abilities people are choosing on level ups. Do some things seem more or less appealing, and why? What tactics did you use on the bosses you faced?

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 3:41 am 
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Uruivellas

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Grey wrote:
Hah, that's great to hear - thanks :D


I like to think of it as credit where it's due.

Quote:
I have a pet hate for confirmation dialogues. 99% of the time you chose right, so why double the number of clicks needed? Roguelikes in general punish misclicks/fudge fingers badly, and that's just the way of things as far as I'm concerned. Sorry :P


I don't mind it too bad. If I wreck something from one misclick in this game, I've been doing something wrong :).

Quote:
Yup! There are hints to every monster's abilities in their tooltips, but since I was trying to keep everything thematic it's not always clear.


I'm probably the odd one out, but I'd rather have "awesome and thematic" than "drab and to the point". To your credit, they did warn the player.

Quote:
Hehe :) The bosses are meant to be the real challenge of the game. Which ones did you get? Grasshopper and Mantis are the worst... (well, apart from the end boss, that's a special type of evil)


Flea twice, Mantis once, Frog once, and Spider which ended my first run. After the second flea, I had to pack it up. :(

I really didn't like Frog. Yanking my into the swarm of enemies...
Spider, like I said, killed me. It was my fault.
I don't actually think I figured out Flea's ability, though...
Mantis, though, was actually a pretty interesting fight. He spawned right next to me. :)

Quote:
Most of the abilities are reasonably powerful in their upgraded form, and some combine exceptionally well together.


I had the feeling they ought to. Careless clicks crushed that concept for me. :(

Quote:
Would love more feedback if you get round to playing more. I'd like the score system to be a bit more meaningful perhaps, and it would be good to get an idea of what abilities people are choosing on level ups. Do some things seem more or less appealing, and why? What tactics did you use on the bosses you faced?


I didn't pay much attention to it, I saw that it dropped by one per step, and I ended with about 700 points at the end of each level. Perhaps things like combos, near-death experiences, and enemies left when the boss is defeated could all factor in?

I chose Firewall first, which helped against the butterflies. I misclicked into Freeze, which I regretted doing. And I was going to get the Copy-attack, but opted for the Pushing one I talked about. Then I cconsidered getting it again, but instead chose... Firewall again, I believe. I died. :)

I don't much see the appeal to taking the standard attack on a level-up, but I have only played once... :)
The Push attack seemed really appealing, again, but I didn't realize it only pushes them away. Which was a(n un)pleasant surprise.
Armor seems like it'd be a good choice, but I wasn't much focused on winning for the first round.

For the bosses I faced, I treated Flea as a standard enemy.
I stayed, or tried to stay, at least several hexes from Mantis, and that went well.
Frog, I'll admit, nearly killed me three times. I beat him accidentally.
And Spider, I looked at, went "huh. He doesn't look so tough"... and that was followed by seeing his ability and going " Feh! Curse my poor choices!".
Can't wait to see the other bosses. Especially the last one. :twisted:

Thank you for accepting the feedback. :) It's nice to help.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 24, 2014 10:44 am 
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The Revanchist wrote:
Mantis, though, was actually a pretty interesting fight. He spawned right next to me. :)

Ouch! I didn't know that could happen actually... Maybe I'll leave it in as a nasty feature ;)

Quote:
I didn't pay much attention to it, I saw that it dropped by one per step, and I ended with about 700 points at the end of each level. Perhaps things like combos, near-death experiences, and enemies left when the boss is defeated could all factor in?

Hmm, the general feedback I'm getting is most people don't care about Score. It is simply left-over turns after completing a level or defeating a boss. Maybe I'll just leave it that way.

Quote:
I chose Firewall first, which helped against the butterflies.

Oh! I hadn't thought about that. Yes, that would definitely help against them. Hmm, now I'm worried that Firewall is OP...

Quote:
I misclicked into Freeze, which I regretted doing.

Oh? Freeze++ is my favourite ability :)

Quote:
I don't much see the appeal to taking the standard attack on a level-up, but I have only played once... :)

Taking it again unlocks another ability you can buy (Zero Cycle Sting - get a free Sting attack each turn) - it's very hidden at the moment though, I need to work on refining the level up dialogue.

Quote:
The Push attack seemed really appealing, again, but I didn't realize it only pushes them away. Which was a(n un)pleasant surprise.

It's still handy :) And you can sabotage an enemy, push it back, then hit it with a ranged attack to take out a bunch of faraway goons :) A big advantage with GridPush is the creation of green grids.

Anyway, look forward to hearing more feedback when you get a chance to play again :)

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:46 am 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2013 12:14 am
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Alright. Back with more feedback. I think I should start by saying my feedback meter is full.

Knowing now that Sting has some special bonus to upgrading, I tried it out. Did you intend to give hypothetically unlimited attacks with it?

I still haven't tested every weapon, but most of them seem pretty equal-opportunity. So far...

Enemies, though, I've formed a solid opinion on. The first five bosses are easy enough, I think it was actually harder to link the hotspots together... :(
For example, using the sting attack, I killed the Beetle in three "turns". Two were getting to it.

Butterflies, with but one exception, are my least favorite. Utter monstrosities. Send a million grubs, ten times that in ants, or even a legion of caterpillars... But keep the butterflies away.

The exception is the hive-Queen. I don't know what else there was to try. I attacked it, I ran from it, I chased it, I linked up every hotspot TWICE! I even tried dying. That went... Poorly.

As for score, I'd like it to have meaning, but with the easily exploited sting-pocalypse, score is effectively zero. :)


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 1:07 pm 
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The Revanchist wrote:
Knowing now that Sting has some special bonus to upgrading, I tried it out. Did you intend to give hypothetically unlimited attacks with it?

Unlimited? Should just give 1 free attack a turn. Which may indeed be overpowering... Certainly the Beetle (one of the weakest bosses) is pretty poor against it. It does mean using 2 level ups to acquire though, making it harder to get the likes of Sabotage++ or Firewall++. Perhaps I'll remove it if it's too strong...

Quote:
Butterflies, with but one exception, are my least favorite. Utter monstrosities. Send a million grubs, ten times that in ants, or even a legion of caterpillars... But keep the butterflies away.

Is this a love to hate, or an outright hatred? :)

Quote:
The exception is the hive-Queen. I don't know what else there was to try. I attacked it, I ran from it, I chased it, I linked up every hotspot TWICE! I even tried dying. That went... Poorly.

Ah! Was worried that might be too obscure... From her description - "I share your strengths and weaknesses".

Thanks for all the feedback, it's been extremely helpful!

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 25, 2014 3:01 pm 
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Uruivellas

Joined: Sun Nov 03, 2013 12:14 am
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Grey wrote:
The Revanchist wrote:
Knowing now that Sting has some special bonus to upgrading, I tried it out. Did you intend to give hypothetically unlimited attacks with it?

Unlimited? Should just give 1 free attack a turn. Which may indeed be overpowering... Certainly the Beetle (one of the weakest bosses) is pretty poor against it. It does mean using 2 level ups to acquire though, making it harder to get the likes of Sabotage++ or Firewall++. Perhaps I'll remove it if it's too strong...


I noticed (accidentally) that if you attack, then move or use a separate sting, and go back to use the first one, it still doesn't count as a full turn. Like I said though, score goes down the toilet.

Quote:
Quote:
Butterflies, with but one exception, are my least favorite. Utter monstrosities. Send a million grubs, ten times that in ants, or even a legion of caterpillars... But keep the butterflies away.

Is this a love to hate, or an outright hatred? :)


Outright. Like the Grand Corruptor to a Zigur peon. Utter, unrequited hatred.

Quote:
Quote:
The exception is the hive-Queen. I don't know what else there was to try. I attacked it, I ran from it, I chased it, I linked up every hotspot TWICE! I even tried dying. That went... Poorly.

Ah! Was worried that might be too obscure... From her description - "I share your strengths and weaknesses".


If I'm interpreting correctly, that's... a tough fight, to say the least. Especially since she seems freeze-immune. :cry:

Quote:
Thanks for all the feedback, it's been extremely helpful!


A game like this deserves greatness. Even if the end-game boss is usable as some twisted form of eternal torment.


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