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Dragons

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Anonymous
July 24, 2005 4:01:08 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

Something I've noticed is that in most roguelikes dragons are rather
pathetic(as Dragons go). A midlevel charachter can take one down in
melee, without surprising them, without being instagibbed in one of the
thousand ways dragons in stories tend to instagib heroes(or threaten
to). I've heard complaints about D&D characters being able to take an
artillery shell to the chest by endgame, and I don't know if it was
here or elsewhere, but either way, I agree: no human or humanoid(except
maybe somebody who was heavily altered somehow) should be able to take
an artillery shell(or similar blow) to the chest. it jsut dosen't work.


Anyway. back to Dragons. the typical dragon, in a story, is between the
size of a large house and a small mountain, and eats animals the size
of horses for breakfast. Dragons are usually named. In most roguelikes,
a Dragon is not named, take s up only one quare(which is what? 2
meters? 3 meters?) and has trouble instagibbing a midlevel, average
Joe. I think that Dragons are just not fearsome enough. Dragons are
usually not very magical, though in many stories they are telepathic to
some degree, have major spellcasting abilities, and generally excellant
hearing and eyesight. THey can somethimes be heard across several
hundered meters, except when they don't want to be, so you might be
advised that there is a dragon on the level. in fact, they might even
be put in with map generation, as a terrain feature and left to wreak
havoc from there.

Basically, the point is, if a dragon has a tail like a whip 10 meters
long and half a meter thick, a wingspan of 20 meters, and jaws like a
tyrannosaur, and all the manueverablity and strength of a good size
python, the temperment of cat, how does a two meter adventurer stand
up to this kind of thing?

More about : dragons

July 24, 2005 4:57:34 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm wrote:
> Something I've noticed is that in most roguelikes dragons are rather
> pathetic(as Dragons go). A midlevel charachter can take one down in
> melee, without surprising them, without being instagibbed in one of the
> thousand ways dragons in stories tend to instagib heroes(or threaten
> to). I've heard complaints about D&D characters being able to take an
> artillery shell to the chest by endgame, and I don't know if it was
> here or elsewhere, but either way, I agree: no human or humanoid(except
> maybe somebody who was heavily altered somehow) should be able to take
> an artillery shell(or similar blow) to the chest. it jsut dosen't work.
>
>
> Anyway. back to Dragons. the typical dragon, in a story, is between the
> size of a large house and a small mountain, and eats animals the size
> of horses for breakfast. Dragons are usually named. In most roguelikes,
> a Dragon is not named, take s up only one quare(which is what? 2
> meters? 3 meters?) and has trouble instagibbing a midlevel, average
> Joe. I think that Dragons are just not fearsome enough. Dragons are
> usually not very magical, though in many stories they are telepathic to
> some degree, have major spellcasting abilities, and generally excellant
> hearing and eyesight. THey can somethimes be heard across several
> hundered meters, except when they don't want to be, so you might be
> advised that there is a dragon on the level. in fact, they might even
> be put in with map generation, as a terrain feature and left to wreak
> havoc from there.
>
> Basically, the point is, if a dragon has a tail like a whip 10 meters
> long and half a meter thick, a wingspan of 20 meters, and jaws like a
> tyrannosaur, and all the manueverablity and strength of a good size
> python, the temperment of cat, how does a two meter adventurer stand
> up to this kind of thing?

I agree. One of the level bosses in Guild is a dragon. It's pretty
gnarly. Can toast your whole party in a couple of rounds if you're not
very careful.

A.
Anonymous
July 24, 2005 7:20:44 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm wrote:
> Something I've noticed is that in most roguelikes dragons are rather
> pathetic(as Dragons go). A midlevel charachter can take one down in
> melee, without surprising them, without being instagibbed in one of the
> thousand ways dragons in stories tend to instagib heroes(or threaten
> to). I've heard complaints about D&D characters being able to take an
> artillery shell to the chest by endgame, and I don't know if it was
> here or elsewhere, but either way, I agree: no human or humanoid(except
> maybe somebody who was heavily altered somehow) should be able to take
> an artillery shell(or similar blow) to the chest. it jsut dosen't work.
>
>
> Anyway. back to Dragons. the typical dragon, in a story, is between the
> size of a large house and a small mountain, and eats animals the size
> of horses for breakfast. Dragons are usually named. In most roguelikes,
> a Dragon is not named, take s up only one quare(which is what? 2
> meters? 3 meters?) and has trouble instagibbing a midlevel, average
> Joe. I think that Dragons are just not fearsome enough. Dragons are
> usually not very magical, though in many stories they are telepathic to
> some degree, have major spellcasting abilities, and generally excellant
> hearing and eyesight. THey can somethimes be heard across several
> hundered meters, except when they don't want to be, so you might be
> advised that there is a dragon on the level. in fact, they might even
> be put in with map generation, as a terrain feature and left to wreak
> havoc from there.
>
> Basically, the point is, if a dragon has a tail like a whip 10 meters
> long and half a meter thick, a wingspan of 20 meters, and jaws like a
> tyrannosaur, and all the manueverablity and strength of a good size
> python, the temperment of cat, how does a two meter adventurer stand
> up to this kind of thing?

This has always kinda bugged me as well. Dragons are supposed to be
among the most fearsome creatures on the planet, not pathetic
nuisances, getting slaughtered in bulk because they drop great magical
items.

Besides the obvious ecological issues at hand, when dealing with these
worlds filled with hundreds of dragons, it's just plain hard to
suspend disbelief when your level 20 fighter hacks down a dragon
casually, with his long sword. "WTF, mate?"

I personally plan to do away with all of that silliness if and when I
actually manage to complete a game (as opposed to toying around with
the tech parts of it). My been-on-hold-way-too-long game Necropolis
was going to feature a dragon. One. Singular. And he would only
show up under certain circumstances, because I don't really believe a
dragon would waste his time involving himself in human problems,
unless it would affect him.

But, oh well. I anticipate most RLs will continue to fill themselves
with ridiculous creatures in ridiculous circumstances, but it's not
too big of a deal, just an annoyance. And, let's face it, the whole
genre is full of inconsistancies and improbable stretches of the
imagination, but that's part of the fun of it.


--
My projects are currently on hold, but I do have
some junk at the site below.

http://www.freewebs.com/timsrl/index.htm

--
Related resources
Anonymous
July 24, 2005 1:04:05 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

On Sun, 24 Jul 2005 03:20:44 -0400, Timothy Pruett
<drakalor.tourist@gmail.com> wrote:

>Besides the obvious ecological issues at hand,

Which are shoved out the door and told to never come back the moment
you set the game in a "dungeon"...

--
R. Dan Henry = danhenry@inreach.com
Anonymous
July 24, 2005 2:08:59 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm wrote:

> I agree: no human or humanoid(except
> maybe somebody who was heavily altered somehow) should be able to take
> an artillery shell(or similar blow) to the chest. it jsut dosen't work.

Depends on the variant you play i guess. In some roguelikes, your
endgame opponents will be gods, and you will be strong enough to
beat them. I'd expect a god to take an artillery shell to the chest
without any problem, and probably a few nukes, too :-)

> Anyway. back to Dragons. the typical dragon, in a story, is between the
> size of a large house and a small mountain,
Perhaps i'm too much influenced by films, but to me a typical dragon
is just a little bigger than an elephant. Enough to fly away with
a cow from now to then...

> Dragons are usually named.
Ah, that would be uncommon, unique, mystical dragons in constrast
to typical dragons ;-)

ToME for example has dragon uniques, and many of those aren't
easy...

> Dragons are usually not very magical
Mh. I expect dragons to be about the most magical creatures
around.
ToME reflects this particially because there Dragons can wear
a magic ring ON EVERY CLAW (e.g. 6 rings or more)

> Basically, the point is, if a dragon has a tail like a whip 10 meters
> long and half a meter thick, a wingspan of 20 meters, and jaws like a
> tyrannosaur, and all the manueverablity and strength of a good size
> python, the temperment of cat, how does a two meter adventurer stand
> up to this kind of thing?

So we have 2 points to consider

a) Every-day-dragons vs. Unique Dragons
b) Game total power scale (gods etc)


A great hero can kill every-day-dragons...
A godslayer can kill any dragon ...
Anonymous
July 24, 2005 2:09:00 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

On Sun, 24 Jul 2005 10:08:59 +0200, Andreas Koch
<mail@kochandreas.com> wrote:

>Perhaps i'm too much influenced by films, but to me a typical dragon
>is just a little bigger than an elephant. Enough to fly away with
>a cow from now to then...

The famous picture of St. George and the dragon shows the dragon about
the size of the horse, but still pretty formidable. I assume the
dragons big enough to circle a hill three times don't fit in the
dungeon.

--
R. Dan Henry = danhenry@inreach.com
Anonymous
July 24, 2005 3:56:54 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

R. Dan Henry wrote:
> On Sun, 24 Jul 2005 10:08:59 +0200, Andreas Koch
> <mail@kochandreas.com> wrote:
>
> >Perhaps i'm too much influenced by films, but to me a typical dragon
> >is just a little bigger than an elephant. Enough to fly away with
> >a cow from now to then...
>
> The famous picture of St. George and the dragon shows the dragon about
> the size of the horse, but still pretty formidable. I assume the
> dragons big enough to circle a hill three times don't fit in the
> dungeon.
>

I obviously read different fantasy than everyone else :D 
Ok, I see the point about whomping on gods by the endgame, but there's
really no explanation of how the player got to the point where he/she
is slaying a higher level dragon(big, whatever that means in your game)
and shrugging off said artillery shell. it's generally considered
obvious that no matter how buff you are, even a rifle bullet will stop
a human(oid). There has to be ome kind of magical explanation for being
so ridiculously powerful, and usually, there's not. your hp increase
with level, when only your skill; should. being very experienced does
not make you invincible: it makes you good at not getitng hurt.
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 1:22:13 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm wrote:
> There has to be ome kind of magical explanation for being
> so ridiculously powerful, and usually, there's not.

Yes. Gameplay :-)
Imagine a realistisc RL.
One sword hit, and either you are dead, or wounded
and need weeks to months before you can fight again.
Even if you are very experienced.
Best you could gain from experience and skill is
beeing able to fight against, lets say, 3 town
people at once without getting hurt.
Not much fun, no?
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 11:31:36 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

"Andreas Koch" <mail@kochandreas.com> wrote in message
news:D c0pol$g2u$05$1@news.t-online.com...
> NIm wrote:
>> There has to be ome kind of magical explanation for being
>> so ridiculously powerful, and usually, there's not.
>
> Yes. Gameplay :-)
> Imagine a realistisc RL.
> One sword hit, and either you are dead, or wounded
> and need weeks to months before you can fight again.
> Even if you are very experienced.
> Best you could gain from experience and skill is
> beeing able to fight against, lets say, 3 town
> people at once without getting hurt.
> Not much fun, no?
>
>

I think though providing fighting was more then just pushing in the
direction - you know - a fighting style which you actually fight including
Blocks, Parries, Attacks, Running Away, Kicking in the Nuts etc... then it
could kinda work. It'd provide some penalty for bad fighting
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 11:38:43 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

>No. Characters with lots of hitpoints cannot shrug off shells; they just
>won't be hit by them until their hitpoints are exhausted.

The inner geek in me says that Wolverine could, so why not some other
hero ?

T.
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 5:28:01 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

Quoting NIm <bladedpenguin@gmail.com>:
>Ok, I see the point about whomping on gods by the endgame, but there's
>really no explanation of how the player got to the point where he/she
>is slaying a higher level dragon(big, whatever that means in your game)
>and shrugging off said artillery shell.

No. Characters with lots of hitpoints cannot shrug off shells; they just
won't be hit by them until their hitpoints are exhausted.
--
David Damerell <damerell@chiark.greenend.org.uk> Distortion Field!
Today is Gaiman, July - a public holiday.
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 8:14:38 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

At Sun, 24 Jul 2005 03:20:44 -0400,
Timothy Pruett wrote:

> NIm wrote:
> This has always kinda bugged me as well. Dragons are supposed to be
> among the most fearsome creatures on the planet, not pathetic
> nuisances, getting slaughtered in bulk because they drop great magical
> items.

You are right, dragons should be unbeatable and insta-kill adventurers on
sight. Their other features, like the size, the looks, the magical
abilities should also be added in. And don;t forget to generate them
often in your game, so that players can see all the work you have put into
implementing all this. They have to encounter they often to see enough of
them, since every encounter will only show the player one turn of the
dragon's life.

Get real. Nobody's going to include a real dragon in a roguelike game.
Those are obviously some lesser, animal-like relatives of real dragons.
They are called dragons, because it's the most "dragonish" thing you're
going to see in your lifetime.

Sure, you can have some "real" dragons in your game. Generated as levels,
probably. You can leave a ticking bomb and head for the exit in the rear
part, provided you're heat and acid resistant enough to survive the trip ;) .

Another way to implement a real dragon in a roguelike with wilderness,
would be to show the dragon's shadow passing over the forest, and a short
while later make a flaming path. Of course no way to kill it, but you
could have some spell or artifact to call for the dragon's help...

--
Radomir `The Sheep' Dopieralski @**@_
(*+) 3 Sparkle
. . . ..v.vVvVVvVvv.v.. .
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 8:14:39 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

The Sheep <thesheep@ sheep.prv.pl> schrieb:
> Nobody's going to include a real dragon in a roguelike game.

Especially since real dragons don't exist.

Everyone just seems to be getting caught up on specific ideas of what a
dragon is. Indeed, in D&D they are as big as a mountain and can take out
entire towns, but adventurers don't defeat them by walking in the front
door of their lair and pulling out their sword.

There's no reason things can't be different in the setting of your game,
as there are plenty of differing fictional accounts of dragons. Why not
have dragons that are only as big as a elephant, or a horse, or a dog?

--
Jim Strathmeyer
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 9:59:40 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

Quoting konijn_ <konijn@gmail.com>:
>David Damerell:
>>No. Characters with lots of hitpoints cannot shrug off shells; they just
>>won't be hit by them until their hitpoints are exhausted.
>The inner geek in me says that Wolverine could, so why not some other
>hero ?

Depends on the genre. In classic D&D pseudofantasy, heroes are superhuman
but not to the point that superheroes are; you're talking Bruce Willis
movie levels of resilience, so they can absorb vicious beatings without
breaking bones, run quickly fifteen minutes after getting broken glass
in the soles of their feet, etc.; but they can't be shot in the chest or
bounce artillery shells.

Obviously in a d20-based superhero game hitpoints might sometimes
represent real physical damage capacity even against artillery shells.
--
David Damerell <damerell@chiark.greenend.org.uk> Distortion Field!
Today is Gaiman, July - a public holiday.
Anonymous
July 25, 2005 11:37:24 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

R. Dan Henry wrote:
> On Mon, 25 Jul 2005 23:14:18 GMT, Ray Dillinger <bear@sonic.net>
> wrote:
>
> >Well, in fantasy stories, he usually does it by thinking.
>
> Whereas in traditional stories, he usually does it by being skilled in
> the use of arms, brave beyond reason, and favored by God/the gods.
>
> Frankly, I think the monsters that should complain about their
> treatment are the kobolds. Mysterious and fearsome mine spirits, with
> a freaking *element* named after them (cobalt), they've become the
> wusses first-level characters scrape off their boots.

First level characters would be readily dispatched by the least of the
kobolds in POWDER.

The ordinary kobold's danger level is 6. There are also much more than
just plain kobold's. For some reason, I've come to like the little
guys. Thanks the meddling of Wpark the Wonderful, kobold mages are
also to be found in the depths. And still deeper one encounters kobold
fighters. And, just when you think you are out of kobolts, come the
fearsome kobold assassin which has a danger level of 20.

Of course, I'll grant my pictorial representation of kobold's is much
more in the D&D canon than the ancient mine spirit canon. But not
every roguelike has kobolds as mere cannon fodder.
--
Jeff Lait
(POWDER: http://www.zincland.com/powder)
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:01:15 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

Andreas Koch wrote:
> NIm wrote:
> > There has to be ome kind of magical explanation for being
> > so ridiculously powerful, and usually, there's not.
>
> Yes. Gameplay :-)
> Imagine a realistisc RL.
> One sword hit, and either you are dead, or wounded
> and need weeks to months before you can fight again.
> Even if you are very experienced.
> Best you could gain from experience and skill is
> beeing able to fight against, lets say, 3 town
> people at once without getting hurt.
> Not much fun, no?

Of course not. That's the whole point of fantasy. But if your going to
be ridiculous, say so, and say why.(kryptonite)
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:10:18 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

konijn_ wrote:
> >No. Characters with lots of hitpoints cannot shrug off shells; they just
> >won't be hit by them until their hitpoints are exhausted.
>
> The inner geek in me says that Wolverine could, so why not some other
> hero ?

Yes, but wolverine has an indestrucible skeleton. Your hero who is
actually taking shells needs his own explanation. and besides, I think
wolverines skeleton would be intact, but but what about the shockwave
of the thing hitting him? Im pretty sure that it would scramble his
insides. When he healed, it would all be connected wrong! THat would be
kind of hilarious, and if we continue to follow the laws of convenient
reality, that could be an interesting plot device.... NTM launching him
roughly into orbit. 1500lb shell hits 300lb(extra for the
ozymandium)body at 2000mph. Houston, we're picking something up on
scanners.....
But, ignoring the adverse effects of having your guts scrambled and
reconnected wrong and being in LEO, he'd be fine.
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:14:14 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

David Damerell wrote:
> Quoting konijn_ <konijn@gmail.com>:
> >David Damerell:
> >>No. Characters with lots of hitpoints cannot shrug off shells; they just
> >>won't be hit by them until their hitpoints are exhausted.
> >The inner geek in me says that Wolverine could, so why not some other
> >hero ?
>
> Depends on the genre. In classic D&D pseudofantasy, heroes are superhuman
> but not to the point that superheroes are; you're talking Bruce Willis
> movie levels of resilience, so they can absorb vicious beatings without
> breaking bones, run quickly fifteen minutes after getting broken glass
> in the soles of their feet, etc.; but they can't be shot in the chest or
> bounce artillery shells.
>
> Obviously in a d20-based superhero game hitpoints might sometimes
> represent real physical damage capacity even against artillery shells.

THis type of superhuman-ness is ok, even with no explanation(it is
after all, fantasy), but when you get hit with a +15 +15 uber fiery
greatsword of slaying that wheighs as much as you do, surviving starts
to sound kinda phony, unless your wearing the amulet of life saving.
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:14:18 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm wrote:
> Something I've noticed is that in most roguelikes dragons are rather
> pathetic(as Dragons go).

Agreed, but more later.

> A midlevel charachter can take one down in
> melee, without surprising them, without being instagibbed in one of the
> thousand ways dragons in stories tend to instagib heroes(or threaten
> to). I've heard complaints about D&D characters being able to take an
> artillery shell to the chest by endgame,

Ghods I wish you hadn't mentioned D&D. Now we're going to
get TSR weenies griping about how you've totally misinterpreted
what hitpoints mean and how the system is really good and how
third-and-a-halfth edition has ironed out all the flaws, and
you won't get anywhere near your real point until they stop
blubbering.

And you're going to get other weenies griping about how D&D is
not the be all and end all of fantasy games and how you should
be looking at other sources or being more original, and then
they'll run into the TSR weenies and there'll be a fight.

Mentioning D&D on this forum is really an excellent thing to
not do. Maybe I'll put that in a FAQ or something.

> Anyway. back to Dragons. the typical dragon, in a story, is between the
> size of a large house and a small mountain, and eats animals the size
> of horses for breakfast. Dragons are usually named. In most roguelikes,
> a Dragon is not named, take s up only one quare(which is what? 2
> meters? 3 meters?) and has trouble instagibbing a midlevel, average
> Joe. I think that Dragons are just not fearsome enough.

Agreed.

> Dragons are
> usually not very magical, though in many stories they are telepathic to
> some degree, have major spellcasting abilities, and generally excellant
> hearing and eyesight. THey can somethimes be heard across several
> hundered meters, except when they don't want to be, so you might be
> advised that there is a dragon on the level. in fact, they might even
> be put in with map generation, as a terrain feature and left to wreak
> havoc from there.

> Basically, the point is, if a dragon has a tail like a whip 10 meters
> long and half a meter thick, a wingspan of 20 meters, and jaws like a
> tyrannosaur, and all the manueverablity and strength of a good size
> python, the temperment of cat, how does a two meter adventurer stand
> up to this kind of thing?

Well, in fantasy stories, he usually does it by thinking. Dragons
in fantasy are a sort of monster that has near-ultimate physical
capabilities, so you have to outsmart them instead. So you get
people playing riddle games with dragons, and people figuring out
how to get past dragons, and people hiding from dragons, and people
bargaining with dragons, and people making sacrifices to fill a
dragon's belly so it leaves them alone, and you get dragons who
are under various hard and fast rules (about lying, for example)
that folks have to figure out how to exploit, and so on... In
actual fantasy stories, there are relatively few examples of
ridiculously tough heroes just duking it out toe to toe with
dragons.

The problem with this is that it requires you to figure out
some advanced AI code to implement, and usually once the player
knows the secret, there's little joy in repeat gameplay. On the
other hand, you've already got the code for duking it out toe to
toe; all you have to do to use it is weaken dragons.

Bear
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:14:19 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

On Mon, 25 Jul 2005 23:14:18 GMT, Ray Dillinger <bear@sonic.net>
wrote:

>Well, in fantasy stories, he usually does it by thinking.

Whereas in traditional stories, he usually does it by being skilled in
the use of arms, brave beyond reason, and favored by God/the gods.

Frankly, I think the monsters that should complain about their
treatment are the kobolds. Mysterious and fearsome mine spirits, with
a freaking *element* named after them (cobalt), they've become the
wusses first-level characters scrape off their boots.

Or to put it more bluntly: There is no wrong way to implement
creatures in *your* game. *You* decide what they are like -- and that
includes humans, lions, tigers, and bears. Only if you are basing your
game on some particular source material is anyone in a position to
tell you that your implementation is wrong. They can certainly
complain they don't like it ("I like my giants fifty-feet tall and
instadeath to any character who melees with them." "I like dragons
that breath every substance known to man, including fiberglass."), but
until you say "This game is set in Narnia" or "This game is set in Oz"
or whatever, it is *your* world and you define its terms.

You can have dragons the size of cats or the size of mountains,
dragons that are little more than huge, powerful lizards or dragons
that are steeped in arcane wisdom and reliant on magical power.
Whatever suits you. And even more importantly, whatever suits your
game.

--
R. Dan Henry = danhenry@inreach.com
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:15:04 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

R. Dan Henry wrote:
> On Mon, 25 Jul 2005 23:14:18 GMT, Ray Dillinger <bear@sonic.net>
> wrote:
>
> >Well, in fantasy stories, he usually does it by thinking.
>
> Whereas in traditional stories, he usually does it by being skilled in
> the use of arms, brave beyond reason, and favored by God/the gods.
>
> Frankly, I think the monsters that should complain about their
> treatment are the kobolds. Mysterious and fearsome mine spirits, with
> a freaking *element* named after them (cobalt), they've become the
> wusses first-level characters scrape off their boots.
>
> Or to put it more bluntly: There is no wrong way to implement
> creatures in *your* game. *You* decide what they are like -- and that
> includes humans, lions, tigers, and bears. Only if you are basing your
> game on some particular source material is anyone in a position to
> tell you that your implementation is wrong. They can certainly
> complain they don't like it ("I like my giants fifty-feet tall and
> instadeath to any character who melees with them." "I like dragons
> that breath every substance known to man, including fiberglass."), but
> until you say "This game is set in Narnia" or "This game is set in Oz"
> or whatever, it is *your* world and you define its terms.
>
> You can have dragons the size of cats or the size of mountains,
> dragons that are little more than huge, powerful lizards or dragons
> that are steeped in arcane wisdom and reliant on magical power.
> Whatever suits you. And even more importantly, whatever suits your
> game.
>

I completely agree.
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:27:25 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

On 25 Jul 2005 19:37:24 -0700, "Jeff Lait"
<torespondisfutile@hotmail.com> wrote:

>First level characters would be readily dispatched by the least of the
>kobolds in POWDER.

Cool!

--
R. Dan Henry = danhenry@inreach.com
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 5:11:41 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm wrote:
> python, the temperment of cat, how does a two meter adventurer stand
> up to this kind of thing?

Magic is the answer:) 
It's obvious that you can't have "impossible to slay" monsters
in the gameplay. If you have there must be a way to go past them
(invisibility, hiding in shadows, teleporting, etc.)
I think you could have monsters that are dangerous (or lethal) in
close combat, such as dragons, but could be killed from the
distance with some long range weapons and spells.
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 1:26:26 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

At Sun, 24 Jul 2005 21:22:13 +0200,
Andreas Koch wrote:

> NIm wrote:
>> There has to be ome kind of magical explanation for being
>> so ridiculously powerful, and usually, there's not.
>
> Yes. Gameplay :-)
> Imagine a realistisc RL.
> One sword hit, and either you are dead, or wounded
> and need weeks to months before you can fight again.
> Even if you are very experienced.
> Best you could gain from experience and skill is
> beeing able to fight against, lets say, 3 town
> people at once without getting hurt.
> Not much fun, no?

Well, it all depends on the setting.

How about a roguelike se in an abandoned alchemy lab, where you're
attacked by, say, cat-sized creatures, all horribly mutated, but very
malicious. You can take several bites and still be able to fight -- until
they get you down to your knees and get to your throat, that is.

You could meet some larger monsters once in a while as bosses, but
I assume you woudn't want to getnear them .

--
Radomir `The Sheep' Dopieralski @**@_
(><) 3 Ouch!
. . . ..v.vVvVVvVvv.v.. .
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 2:07:05 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm a écrit :
>
> David Damerell wrote:
>
>>Quoting konijn_ <konijn@gmail.com>:
>>
>>>David Damerell:
>>>
>>>>No. Characters with lots of hitpoints cannot shrug off shells; they just
>>>>won't be hit by them until their hitpoints are exhausted.
>>>
>>>The inner geek in me says that Wolverine could, so why not some other
>>>hero ?
>>
>>Depends on the genre. In classic D&D pseudofantasy, heroes are superhuman
>>but not to the point that superheroes are; you're talking Bruce Willis
>>movie levels of resilience, so they can absorb vicious beatings without
>>breaking bones, run quickly fifteen minutes after getting broken glass
>>in the soles of their feet, etc.; but they can't be shot in the chest or
>>bounce artillery shells.
>>
>>Obviously in a d20-based superhero game hitpoints might sometimes
>>represent real physical damage capacity even against artillery shells.
>
>
> THis type of superhuman-ness is ok, even with no explanation(it is
> after all, fantasy), but when you get hit with a +15 +15 uber fiery
> greatsword of slaying that wheighs as much as you do, surviving starts
> to sound kinda phony, unless your wearing the amulet of life saving.

High level adventurers are favored by the gods and have an intrinsic
aura of protection called "Many HP"
Anonymous
July 26, 2005 3:23:07 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

Quoting NIm <bladedpenguin@gmail.com>:
>David Damerell wrote:
>>Depends on the genre. In classic D&D pseudofantasy, heroes are superhuman
>>but not to the point that superheroes are;
>THis type of superhuman-ness is ok, even with no explanation(it is
>after all, fantasy), but when you get hit with a +15 +15 uber fiery
>greatsword of slaying that wheighs as much as you do, surviving starts
>to sound kinda phony, unless your wearing the amulet of life saving.

Again, if you read what I wrote, you aren't (except in a 4-colour
superhero setting) clobbered with it. If it didn't use up your hitpoints,
the fire burns you a little, or you get a nick dodging out the way, or it
bashes your armour up and bruises you.
--
David Damerell <damerell@chiark.greenend.org.uk> Kill the tomato!
Today is Second Potmos, July.
Anonymous
July 29, 2005 6:45:55 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

Krice wrote:
> NIm wrote:
> > python, the temperment of cat, how does a two meter adventurer stand
> > up to this kind of thing?
>
> Magic is the answer:) 
> It's obvious that you can't have "impossible to slay" monsters
> in the gameplay. If you have there must be a way to go past them
> (invisibility, hiding in shadows, teleporting, etc.)
> I think you could have monsters that are dangerous (or lethal) in
> close combat, such as dragons, but could be killed from the
> distance with some long range weapons and spells.

OR sneak up on it and stab it in it's sleep with a poisoned harpoon and
RUN!
Anonymous
July 31, 2005 6:21:26 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

NIm wrote:
> Something I've noticed is that in most roguelikes dragons are rather
> pathetic(as Dragons go). A midlevel charachter can take one down in
> melee, without surprising them, without being instagibbed in one of the
> thousand ways dragons in stories tend to instagib heroes(or threaten
> to). I've heard complaints about D&D characters being able to take an
> artillery shell to the chest by endgame, and I don't know if it was
> here or elsewhere, but either way, I agree: no human or humanoid(except
> maybe somebody who was heavily altered somehow) should be able to take
> an artillery shell(or similar blow) to the chest. it jsut dosen't work.
>
>
> Anyway. back to Dragons. the typical dragon, in a story, is between the
> size of a large house and a small mountain, and eats animals the size
> of horses for breakfast. Dragons are usually named. In most roguelikes,
> a Dragon is not named, take s up only one quare(which is what? 2
> meters? 3 meters?)

I think it would be interesting to create a roguelike where 1 square is
barely enough space to fit a med. humanoid in. cramped spaces (like
corridors of one square width) could affect melee (which should then be
expanded to several squares range), as well as providing opportunity to
make harrowing escapes from e.g. instagib dragons, which wouldn't be
able to fit through.

a challenge here would be to create dungeons with passageways of
multiple widths, thoroughfares suitable for the passage of the larger
monsters (Smaug) and shafts for smaller creatures (Bilbo) to lurk in.

>THey can somethimes be heard across several
> hundered meters, except when they don't want to be, so you might be
> advised that there is a dragon on the level.

For that matter, most roguelikes I recall lack much of a "hearing"
function. Nethack has that rudimentary notice "you hear noises in the
distance (or nearby, if blind)", though to be more specific, only
combat produces "noises". a nice feature might also include some
reference to direction; though hearing through rock walls is
unrealistic, it could be more immersive; sound should echo well in this
environment, but this could be difficult to implement (well,
pathfinding might work for basic sound propagation)

> Basically, the point is, <snip> how does a two meter adventurer stand
> up to this kind of thing?

the situation makes much more sense after several ! of booze.
Anonymous
July 31, 2005 9:53:30 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

jasonnorthrup@yahoo.com wrote:
> NIm wrote:
>
> >THey can somethimes be heard across several
> > hundered meters, except when they don't want to be, so you might be
> > advised that there is a dragon on the level.
>
> For that matter, most roguelikes I recall lack much of a "hearing"
> function. Nethack has that rudimentary notice "you hear noises in the
> distance (or nearby, if blind)", though to be more specific, only
> combat produces "noises". a nice feature might also include some
> reference to direction; though hearing through rock walls is
> unrealistic, it could be more immersive; sound should echo well in this
> environment, but this could be difficult to implement (well,
> pathfinding might work for basic sound propagation)

I think doing proper sound propagation is a bit of overkill that would
likely be missed to most people.

In POWDER, all creatures and most actions generate noise. Whenever it
is tested to see if one creature can sense another, one of the senses
tested is hearing. The accumulated noise factor is rolled against a
pure distance function (ignoring LOS, allowing one to hear through
doors and walls). If this passes, one can hear the creature.

In display this works well because POWDER is graphical - I draw the
creature with a greyed out overlay with an 'H' in the upper right
corner. If you sense the creature with ESP, you get an 'E'.

You can see this effect at low levels when you are blinded by a lux.
They are quite noisy so you usually continue to see them registered on
the map in this fashion.

The same is also true in reverse - monsters can sense you if you make
too much noise. This nicely nerfs invisibility - if you go close
enough to a monster while wearing full plate, it will likely hear you,
rendering your invisibility ineffective.
--
Jeff Lait
(POWDER: http://www.zincland.com/powder)
Anonymous
July 31, 2005 11:17:31 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

jasonnorthrup@yahoo.com wrote:
> NIm wrote:
> > Something I've noticed is that in most roguelikes dragons are rather
> > pathetic(as Dragons go). A midlevel charachter can take one down in
> > melee, without surprising them, without being instagibbed in one of the
> > thousand ways dragons in stories tend to instagib heroes(or threaten
> > to). I've heard complaints about D&D characters being able to take an
> > artillery shell to the chest by endgame, and I don't know if it was
> > here or elsewhere, but either way, I agree: no human or humanoid(except
> > maybe somebody who was heavily altered somehow) should be able to take
> > an artillery shell(or similar blow) to the chest. it jsut dosen't work.
> >
> >
> > Anyway. back to Dragons. the typical dragon, in a story, is between the
> > size of a large house and a small mountain, and eats animals the size
> > of horses for breakfast. Dragons are usually named. In most roguelikes,
> > a Dragon is not named, take s up only one quare(which is what? 2
> > meters? 3 meters?)
>
> I think it would be interesting to create a roguelike where 1 square is
> barely enough space to fit a med. humanoid in. cramped spaces (like
> corridors of one square width) could affect melee (which should then be
> expanded to several squares range), as well as providing opportunity to
> make harrowing escapes from e.g. instagib dragons, which wouldn't be
> able to fit through.
>
> a challenge here would be to create dungeons with passageways of
> multiple widths, thoroughfares suitable for the passage of the larger
> monsters (Smaug) and shafts for smaller creatures (Bilbo) to lurk in.
>

In my game, I plan to have a crack as a type of terrain. it will still
be one square, but it will be invisible if you are unobservant, and
impassable if you are especially large. fluid creatures like
doppleganger(if they exist) and blobs will be able to traverse them
regardless of size, but will be stretched out like a worm when they do
so.

I'll handle dragons like the long worm in nethack, except with wings.
the wings can be folded against the body, but they are still too big to
fit through a one square wide corridor. they can still get a head in
about 10% of thier length to roast a riddling burglar! They won't fly
while underground, and when they do fly, they just go up out of even
missile range and dive for an instagib on anything occuping one square.
Don't fight them outside, or fight them while you are something huge,
or puncture thier wings first thing.

[Snip commentary on hearing]
Anonymous
August 1, 2005 11:56:45 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

Jeff Lait wrote:

> I think doing proper sound propagation is a bit of overkill that would
> likely be missed to most people.

The distinction is that, in a maze, sound pathing tells you which path
to take, independent of how winding the passageways are. the
disadvantage is, it doesn't tell you where the source is. "hearing
through walls" is opposite in these cases. It tells you where the
source is, but not how to get to it.
Anonymous
August 1, 2005 11:02:19 PM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

jasonnorthrup@yahoo.com wrote:
> Jeff Lait wrote:
>
>
>>I think doing proper sound propagation is a bit of overkill that would
>>likely be missed to most people.
>
>
> The distinction is that, in a maze, sound pathing tells you which path
> to take, independent of how winding the passageways are. the
> disadvantage is, it doesn't tell you where the source is. "hearing
> through walls" is opposite in these cases. It tells you where the
> source is, but not how to get to it.

Hmmm. It seems to me that you can do something fairly similar to
proper sound paths without investing much runtime computation.

What you have to do is develop a virtual coordinate system for
sound propagation when you generate the dungeon and assign
virtual coordinates to each square on the map. Then when you
want to know how "far away" a sound seems to come from, you
just calculate the distance (possibly the manhattan distance
or some other approximation) in the virtual coordinate set.

You have to live with it being approximate; and you have to
do the virtual coordinates in at probably at least four
dimensions to get the "distances" to work out approximately
correctly.

The tricky part is figuring out how to assign the coordinates
and what an appropriate hearing range is. At dungeon generation
time you'd have to do the work to find the open-path distances
between several "key" squares (probably at intersections,
corridor ends, and room doorways and corners) and then do a
regression to find coordinates for those squares in a
four-space coordinate system with the property that the
four-space straight-line distances were as close as possible
to matching the two-space open-path distances.

Then you'd interpolate between the nearest "key" squares to
find the four-space coordinates of all other squares.

Now, when a creature standing on square S makes a noise,
you can just compare the 4-space coordinates of S to the
4-space coordinates of the square where the @ is standing
in order to find the (approximate) open-path distance
between them and thus know whether to print a message
about hearing something (and which message).

This kind of map would be useful for monster pathfinding,
too; you could just query all the adjacent squares to see
which had a set of 4-space coordinates actually closer to
the @'s current 4-space coordinates, and move that direction.
That's way faster than A*.

It would be approximate; there'd be occasional distortions.
but it should be useful.

Bear
Anonymous
August 2, 2005 12:21:47 AM

Archived from groups: rec.games.roguelike.development (More info?)

At Mon, 01 Aug 2005 19:02:19 GMT,
Ray Dillinger wrote:

> jasonnorthrup@yahoo.com wrote:
>> Jeff Lait wrote:
> Then you'd interpolate between the nearest "key" squares to
> find the four-space coordinates of all other squares.

Why not just throw in a bunch of "resonators" in the "key" places,
like doors and corners (some of them could be named, so you can generate
descriptive messages, like "You hear rustling from behind the door."),
rembeber the distances and connections (in the sense of sound propagation)
between them and just do simple pathfinding on the graph they create?

--
Radomir `The Sheep' Dopieralski @**@_
(><) 3 Ouch!
. . . ..v.vVvVVvVvv.v.. .
!