Announcement: Remember: you are giving away your fantastic ideas for free, and somebody else might even make money from them (or appear to). That's just how the world works! If you're worried about it, maybe you shouldn't post your ideas here.


Caravel Forum : DROD Boards : Feature Requests : Splittable monsters (I had this basic idea)
New Topic New Poll Post Reply
Poster Message
Pekka
Level: Smiter
Rank Points: 302
Registered: 09-19-2007
IP: Logged
icon Splittable monsters (+2)  
Okay, I'm not fully sure this hasn't been proposed before, but I didn't find anything with some obvious search terms. I also know with TSS coming out soon, this isn't a good time to propose new features as they won't make it in there no matter how good.

But not minding that, I just want to write it out in case it inspires someone at some point. I think it's more of something that could be developed to be a great idea with a few good tweaks as something I already consider great. :)

How to implement a monster that splits into two when you strike a lethal blow? As far as I know, this has only been suggested for snake-type monsters, and not single-square ones. Let's see.

If splitting a monster can spawn the new monsters next to you, these should not kill you on their very next turn. Therefore, they should skip one turn. Let's call this the stunning rule. New monsters are stunned and lose one turn after being created by splitting.

The monsters should not be able to be split without limit, as that kind of defeats the goal of clearing a room. I suggest having three sizes of splittable monsters, such as large, medium and small. Small monsters don't split any further, but die normally when slain. (I have another idea I'll touch on below. It's probablyy needlessly complex.)

Now, these monsters might be related to tarstuff somehow, so I am going to name the one I am proposing here Green Jelly. I didn't invent different mechanics for other colors, so let's just assume it's possible to grow Gel in very special ways and use special materials to make it behave differently and create Jelly monsters. And that's why they are green. Are there Red or Blue Jellies? I don't know.

GJs can be large, medium or small. If you kill a large GJ, it splits into two medium ones. Medium ones become small and small ones just die normally. They would move like Gel Babies for consistency, unless people feel the monsters would be more interesting with other kind of movement pattern. Testing would be useful to find this out.

After being slain, the new, stunned GJs need to be placed somewhere nearby. If you pick two standard positions relative to the player and his sword, these spots might not always be open. So, a rule to find secondary spots for them can be employed.

I propose a 90-degree rule for the initial split positions. That is, the two new monsters end up in 90-degree position relative to your sword, one to the right and one to the left. The two basic results are that if you stab a GJ right above you, one part ends up diagonally left and up, and one right and up. If you stab one diagonally right up, one ends up two squares above you, and one two squares right. Symmetry takes care of other positions.

In other words, you end up with a T-shape, with you being the leg and the sword being in the center, and the new monsters the arms.

Now, these are the first position that are tried, but if they are blocked, the new monsters will end up in other places if possible. To break the tie, we try to find the place for the one on the left side first. If it can't go on its ideal position, we try all the position in counterclockwise order around the sword starting from the ideal one until there is an empty one. (This means that if there are multiple open positions, it'll probably end up farther from you than nearer.)

Obviously it cannot spawn on the player and kill him, 'cause that would be super unfair. If there is no spot, then it never spawns at all and you just killed the original monster. If it can spawn, the same procedure in reverse is used for the right-side GJ. Thus, in cramped positions you might avoid one or even both new monsters being spawned.

Note that the resulting monsters should always end up on a square next to the sword. Which I think makes the most sense.

Splitting can be treated as the new monster moving from the position of the old one into the new empty spot, if such can be found and the move would be normally legal. After moving, a new monster will skip its next turn due to being stunned.

Splittable monsters at the very edge of explosion could split too and the resulting monsters pushed outside the explosion's area if possible. This needs a specific rule too, but I'm just leaving this idea out there for now. Other ways of killing monsters would have to be dealt too, but I feel like one getting eaten would just end up with it being, well, eaten. And gone.

A possibility is to allow the GJs to merge too. This would work so that if a monster moves during its turn onto another monster of the same kind and size, they combine to form a larger one, unless both are already large/maximum size. This merging could happen right after being split into two, in which case the resulting merged monster would be stunned. If it happens as a result of a normal move, then the resulting monster should not get to move anymore during the same turn.

Now, there is another option for more monster sizes. I'm not happy with this idea, as it could not be clearly indicated by the graphics alone. Instead of three sizes, the monsters have a hit point total. Every time one is hit, the game subtracts one hit point from it if the total is odd, or two if it is even. The resulting hit points, if positive, are divided by two to give the totals for the newly split monsters. If the result is zero, the monster dies.

Any monsters can combine with the same type by adding their hit points together until this rule, so it does have some merit at least. However, I feel it is a bit too complex to be fun.

That's it. Now, if anyone remembers this idea being discussed before, let me know. I'll link to the old discussion, or even remove this post if it's all been hashed out. I just put this out here in case it inspires someone to create an interesting adversary in some game or other. (Doesn't have to be DROD. I was just thinking DROD when I came up with this.)
03-14-2014 at 04:15 PM
View Profile Show all user's posts This architect's holds Quote Reply
Someone Else
Level: Smitemaster
Rank Points: 1250
Registered: 06-14-2005
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (0)  
I'd think that it might work better as a monster that can only be killed in certain circumstances. Suppose that it always split, if possible, but only into spaces perpendicularly adjacent to the sword. Then you could kill them in narrow corridors. Similarly, they could be killed by bombs. Also, if they aren't immune to hot tiles, they could be killed that way (though it might be better if they've got roach beelining, in that case).

In general, I like the idea, but not the different sizes.
03-14-2014 at 07:49 PM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Send Email to User Show all user's posts High Scores This architect's holds Quote Reply
mrimer
Level: Legendary Smitemaster
Avatar
Rank Points: 4925
Registered: 02-04-2003
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (0)  
You can most likely script (at least some parts of) this monster fairly easily in 5.0.

____________________________
Gandalf? Yes... That's what they used to call me.
Gandalf the Grey. That was my name.
I am Gandalf the White.
And I come back to you now at the turn of the tide.

[Last edited by mrimer at 03-14-2014 09:21 PM]
03-14-2014 at 09:21 PM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Send Email to User Show all user's posts High Scores This architect's holds Quote Reply
Someone Else
Level: Smitemaster
Rank Points: 1250
Registered: 06-14-2005
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (+1)  
Yeah, you can do all of it in 4.0 except that you can't have on death commands (or Imperative: Invulnerable and Imperative: Required Target).
03-14-2014 at 10:18 PM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Send Email to User Show all user's posts High Scores This architect's holds Quote Reply
Pekka
Level: Smiter
Rank Points: 302
Registered: 09-19-2007
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (0)  
Thanks for the responses! I look forward to the new scripting features and things that will be possible with them.

I do have to say something in defense of the different sizes. I like the idea because it offers a visual clue to the player first encountering this monster that the attacks have an effect. If you attack and end up with two monsters that look just like the one previously, it can give the wrong message about the possibility of slaying these monsters in the normal way. And on the whole, I like it better when you can just visually tell what is going on with the critters.

Perhaps Someone Else was criticizing the the sizes (to be exact, he said he didn't like them) from another angle. I just wanted to clarify why I thought it's good to have different sizes and have them reflected in the graphics. I hope it's clearer now at least.

Now, I think we can put this on hold until it's possible to test the ideas out in practice more easily.
03-16-2014 at 06:11 PM
View Profile Show all user's posts This architect's holds Quote Reply
skell
Level: Legendary Smitemaster
Avatar
Rank Points: 3652
Registered: 12-28-2004
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (0)  
There doesn't seem to be anything inherently unscriptable here. True, you can't run a command on death so you'd have to detect if something damaged it yourself, but the rest sounds simple.

____________________________
My website | Facebook | Twitter
11-04-2020 at 03:17 PM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Send Email to User Visit Homepage Show all user's posts High Scores This architect's holds Quote Reply
Xindaris
Level: Smitemaster
Avatar
Rank Points: 1324
Registered: 06-13-2015
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (+2)  
Speaking from experience (water barrels/oil barrels) "just detect when a thing dies" is really difficult to script and basically impossible to do without individually scripting every single instance of the relevant character type in addition to the "manager" entity, as opposed to having a "universal script for this character type" which would be possible with a "on death" sort of label.

I'm pretty sure there's at least one FR floating around specifically for an "on death" label, though.

____________________________
109th Skywatcher

Here are some links to Things!
Click here to view the secret text


[Last edited by Xindaris at 11-04-2020 03:41 PM]
11-04-2020 at 03:33 PM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Show all user's posts High Scores This architect's holds Quote Reply
skell
Level: Legendary Smitemaster
Avatar
Rank Points: 3652
Registered: 12-28-2004
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (0)  
Yes, as typical of DROD Script you have to work your design around its limitations, both in terms of the element design and the architectural design.

____________________________
My website | Facebook | Twitter
11-04-2020 at 03:53 PM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Send Email to User Visit Homepage Show all user's posts High Scores This architect's holds Quote Reply
azb
Level: Smiter
Rank Points: 384
Registered: 03-08-2014
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (+2)  
If I may raise a point here speaking from experience as a game developer...

Sure, even though the feature doesn't add any new functionality to the game that doesn't exist already, I don't think that is a very good reason to deny a request entirely - as an analogy, the people who developed computer operating systems could feasibly have forced you to write DROD or other games in 100% binary, but it would be hopelessly difficult and tedious to do without an in-depth (essentially requiring a Ph.D) knowledge of computer science, so that many people would be discouraged from making cool games to begin with.

By similar reasoning, it would be helpful to implement code that helps make scripting run easier, instead of requiring the player to know a very wonky/unintuitive and tedious method of implementation.

____________________________
If you enjoyed the other holds in
the Blank Dungeon series, please publicly test The Final Reckoning today!

[Last edited by azb at 02-15-2021 12:54 AM : Grammar - missing "and" between "difficult" and "tedious"]
02-15-2021 at 12:52 AM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Show all user's posts This architect's holds Quote Reply
skell
Level: Legendary Smitemaster
Avatar
Rank Points: 3652
Registered: 12-28-2004
IP: Logged
icon Re: Splittable monsters (+2)  
I think I've touched about this before but there are a bunch of opposite forces at play here, and the short version is - the development time is a limited resource. If something is possible or mostly possible in the current engine, it makes sense to put the resources into enabling new things.

I don't fully agree with your logic though - there is a huge difference in goals and requirements for an operating system or game engine that's used by millions of people and a game with player base in low hundreds :).

Either way, it's a moot point because 5.2 (if ever released) will have this.

____________________________
My website | Facebook | Twitter
03-01-2021 at 07:59 AM
View Profile Send Private Message to User Send Email to User Visit Homepage Show all user's posts High Scores This architect's holds Quote Reply
New Topic New Poll Post Reply
Caravel Forum : DROD Boards : Feature Requests : Splittable monsters (I had this basic idea)
Surf To:


Forum Rules:
Can I post a new topic? No
Can I reply? No
Can I read? Yes
HTML Enabled? No
UBBC Enabled? Yes
Words Filter Enable? No

Contact Us | CaravelGames.com

Powered by: tForum tForumHacks Edition b0.98.8
Originally created by Toan Huynh (Copyright © 2000)
Enhanced by the tForumHacks team and the Caravel team.