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Caravel Forum : DROD Boards : Holds : Beginner's Set 1 (What? It IS a beginner's set.)
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Author Name:Neatherman
Submitted By:Neather man
Hold Name:Beginner's Set 1
Theme:What? It IS a beginner's set.
Author's Difficulty:
Number of Levels:25
Number of Rooms:75
Number of Monsters:767
Version:DROD: Journey to Rooted Hold
High Scores:View High Scores
Hold Karma:0 (+1 / -1)
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File: Beginners Set 1 Level 17 fixed.hold (19.1 KB)
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icon Beginner's Set 1  
It's easy, but it's meant to be that way.
03-31-2013 at 06:22 AM
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Tahnan
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (+2)  
There's a misapprehension that, just because something is easy, it must not be very good. This isn't true--some easy holds here on the forum are probably somewhat underappreciated, but you can look at DROD Tutorials by Nillo (three brains, 7.1 rating) or Zonhin's Tutorial (1.5 brains, 6.3 rating). And I can name a number of games--computer games, board games--which are extremely simple design, but are still excellent as introductions, or even sometimes interesting beyond their introductory quality, notable for their elegance or aesthetics. But some people believe that "easy" is the same as "boring".

This hold is why.

The first room of this hold contains unnecessary scripting, awkwardly written dialogue that repeats if you re-enter the room after clearing it, and a handful of monsters contained in a small area with lots of empty space around them. That's more or less all that this hold contains, except that there are another 49 rooms of it (plus 25 "walk through to the exit" rooms with floor numbers written in tarstuff, in a lopsided manner). The scripting was rarely unpredictable--annoying in Level 2, but most of it is "clear the monsters and the door will open" or "get near the door and it will open". (That's what makes it unnecessary; the former is usually called a "green door" and the latter a "pressure plate".)

But really, in the end, there's just not really anything here. There's a 116-step "maze" that's really just walking through a short path; half the room is literally left empty. There's an "insane roach level" in which the first room has a roach queen who manages to spawn twice, one roach each time, before you kill her. (The next room has around 60 brained roaches, which comes closer to qualifying as "insane", though that also gives you an idea of how thematically well-connected the two rooms on any given level are.) There's hardly even anything interesting from an optimization point of view, though a handful of the horde rooms might accidentally qualify.

Enthusiasm is welcome in architects. But that's all this hold has going for it, and it's nowhere near enough.

[Last edited by Tahnan at 03-31-2013 08:23 AM]
03-31-2013 at 08:22 AM
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Someone Else
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (+1)  
"Trap door puzzles are frowned upon[...]" And then a trap door puzzle. That, I think, sums this hold up neatly.
03-31-2013 at 08:52 AM
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Neather man
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (0)  
I don't have Pressure Plates in that hold because I was using JtRH. Also, I did say several times that it was going to bore experts, but it interests beginners.
04-07-2013 at 01:19 PM
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Jacob
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (+1)  
Tahnan's made a lot of good points that it's worth paying attention to for future holds you might want to make.
I would agree with him that the hold could be a lot better - it is not just that he found it boring because he is more experienced, it because there were lots of problems with how it was made.

His point is not specifically that you should have included pressure plates, but that there's no point in using unintuitive scripting to perform functions that the game can already support.

e.g. you don't need to script a door to open if you've killed the monsters in the room. That's what a green door does already.
Also, you don't need a script to make a roach every 30 turns - that's what a roach queen does!

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04-07-2013 at 01:49 PM
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RabidChild
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (0)  
I think Tahnan pretty much said it all. I just want to point out that there's a backtracking issue on Level 2. I completed 1N but didn't realize that two more roaches had spawned before I exited. I couldn't go back the way I came because of the green door, so my only option was to restore to the entrance and start the level over.
05-05-2013 at 10:57 PM
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Doom
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (0)  
quote:
RabidChild wrote:
I think Tahnan pretty much said it all. I just want to point out that there's a backtracking issue on Level 2. I completed 1N but didn't realize that two more roaches had spawned before I exited. I couldn't go back the way I came because of the green door, so my only option was to restore to the entrance and start the level over.
Beginner's Set 1 : Level 2 : 1 North
So those characters in this pic are roaches that can appear after the green door is down? That sounds like an interesting decision to not just put roaches there.

I think you can restore to 1N without losing any progress though (click 'Room start'), so this doesn't seem very critical to fix. It'd be very different if there were other rooms before the blue door that you'd be forced to replay.

Edit: You're right. I forgot how restore works. Need to replay one room in this case.

[Last edited by Doom at 05-06-2013 12:05 AM]
05-05-2013 at 11:22 PM
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RabidChild
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (0)  
quote:
Doom wrote:
Beginner's Set 1 : Level 2 : 1 North
So those characters in this pic are roaches that can appear after the green door is down? That sounds like an interesting decision to not just put roaches there.

The scripting causes two roaches to appear every thirty turns. Apparently it stops at turn 300, but that's not at all obvious when playing the room.
quote:
Doom wrote:
I think you can restore to 1N without losing any progress though (click 'Room start'), so this doesn't seem very critical to fix. It'd be very different if there were other rooms before the blue door that you'd be forced to replay.

Once I've entered from the north, "Room Start" always starts me at that entrance, so I had to restore to the level entrance and replay both rooms.
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05-05-2013 at 11:53 PM
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west.logan
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (0)  
Not to beat a dead horse but this level set really isn't fun, sadly. Lots of unintuitive scripting (when does that door open and why exactly?), trapdoor puzzle right after saying "architects frown upon these but they're not bad" and the er... "story" that just ends abruptly? It's easy but it's also not fun, I just wasn't sure what the point was. It's not really a tutorial and there aren't any puzzles so...?

Sorry I can't say much more constructive.

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05-14-2013 at 09:39 PM
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Odyssey
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (-1)  
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07-10-2013 at 04:45 PM
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martz
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icon Re: Beginner's Set 1 (+2)  
Hmm, let's see what we have here:

Speech repeating, unintuitive scripting, minimalist rooms, some semblance of a story that suddenly seems to end part way through the hold. The only really tricky rooms are ones with lots of brained monsters, and if this is really aimed at beginners, they'd probably struggle with them anyway.

Worth playing for high-scores, otherwise there are better holds out there for beginners (see Tahnan's post at the top of the page).

My Verdict:

Difficulty: 3
Fun: 2

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05-12-2014 at 12:23 PM
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