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Caravel Forum : DROD Boards : Feature Requests : Smaller rooms! (A simple idea. Hopefully easy, but not sure.)
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FeedtheGentryii
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icon Smaller rooms! (+8)  
So, first I'll lay out the idea as clearly as I can:
An option to make a level (or entire hold) have half the width and height per room, with each tile appearing twice as big.

I would find this helpful mostly because the current room size is pretty hecking big, and it's really hard for me to build a puzzle that takes up that much space. I don't know how many other people are like this, but surely SOME are, right?
While it would sort of work to just have long passages between rooms, it would make an easy spot to bottleneck any roach horde, and tunnels would grant an almost completely safe spot for the player to commit genroachcide(not sorry), as well as giving them a place to hide when it's not safe.

Another reason this would be useful is that the sprites are pretty small, and it would be way easier on the eyes to have them appear bigger, both for the architect and for the player.

Last, but very much least, a smaller room size could make for slightly different puzzles, as getting from one side of the room to the other now takes half the amount of moves, when stuff like roach queens and tar mothers don't.

I'm not sure how difficult it would be to make it so that some holds are zoomed in and some aren't, but I hope you can do it, because I really want it to happen.

Also, if you see this, please respond with whether you might add this idea. I promise I won't pester you about it if you decline, I just get really anxious when I don't know what's going to happen, even if it doesn't matter that much.

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03-08-2021 at 10:39 PM
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averagemoe
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (0)  
Yeah, I miss Flash DROD too. But this still comes off as a raygun.

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03-08-2021 at 11:12 PM
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mauvebutterfly
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+1)  
Using some combination force arrows, green doors, and yellow doors with pressure plates could make those long corridors into the room inaccessible once the room starts.

Likewise, one-way tunnels could be used.

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03-08-2021 at 11:20 PM
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FeedtheGentryii
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mauvebutterfly wrote:
Using some combination force arrows, green doors, and yellow doors with pressure plates could make those long corridors into the room inaccessible once the room starts.

Likewise, one-way tunnels could be used.
The problem with that is that you can still wait inside the corridor at the start (and enemies at the front could lock you out!), and I don't think the one-way tunnels would solve the first problem with them, although I admit I forgot that was a thing.

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03-09-2021 at 01:12 AM
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Dragon Fogel
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+2)  
Being locked out counters the first issue. But also, it's fairly common to have setups where you have to go into the main area of a room and release monsters, and they can't move until then.

Or, you can set up the room around one specific entrance if you want the monsters to be moving from the beginning, and use corridors for exits behind green doors, where they'll have no impact on anything.

One final option is to use scripting to make the player start a room in a specific place. See Narrow Perspectives for an example of this.

There are a lot of ways to use only a small area of the room. Being able to customize room size would be nice, but if you want to make smaller rooms, it's entirely doable with the current tools.
03-09-2021 at 01:56 AM
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mauvebutterfly
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One trick you could do to enforce "starting" inside the room is to have a roach queen that lays an egg on a pressure plate that seals the puzzle room. If you haven't gone inside by then, then the puzzle becomes inaccessible.

The queen could be in a tiny chamber with just space for her, a single egg on a pressure plate, and some firetraps that the pressure plate turns on to kill the queen and the spawned roach. This way, this setup doesn't impact the rest of the room at all.

The pressure plate, in addition to locking the player inside the puzzle room, would also open other doors (or disable force arrows) to allow the player to now access the rest of the room. This way the player can't start before turn 30. Basically, you'd be setting up an airlock that toggles when the queen spawns on turn 30.

It's a bit contrived, but that's par for the course with a bunch of DROD setups. I think it's an idea that could work well for what you're describing though.

addendum: force arrows prevent queen spawns and tar growth, but disabled arrows don't, so using force arrows like this would allow you to have a room with other spawning entities in it that don't spawn on the first spawn cycle. Tar spawns after roach queens, so using tar to toggle the plate may be necessary depending on the elements you are intending to use. Waterskipper nests can spawn on force arrows, so you'd just have to accept an extra 3 waterskippers if trying to do this.

You could also combine this setup with a build command in scripting to remove walls on turn 30 if having a bunch of disabled arrows or open doors everywhere goes against your aesthetic or causes other issues.

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03-09-2021 at 05:14 AM
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kieranmillar
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+2)  
If your room only has one meaningful direction you start from (or even only has the one entrance), you can just move the room next to the room edge. The playable area doesn't have to always be in the middle.

In practice, the way DROD is coded makes this feature request very unlikely without a full rewrite.
03-09-2021 at 08:02 AM
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Insoluble
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+3)  
Sure there may be workarounds to get things to work, but that doesn't change the fact that this F.R. is absolutely a great idea. I think even Erik mentioned at some point that one thing he wishes he could change about DROD was the fixed room size. And you are definitely not alone in thinking that the default room size is way too big. Most modern holds never really use the full room size, and a lot of first time architects can't shake the feeling that they need to fill up all that space and the quality of their first hold suffers dramatically as a result.

Unfortunately this is the kind of F.R. that is unlikely to make it into the next backwards compatible version of DROD. Definitely something to keep in mind for the next non-backwards compatible thing (like Flash DROD 2-player DROD if anything like that ever happens again).

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03-09-2021 at 01:20 PM
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Keiya
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+4)  
There's also the issue of graphics. DROD is in that awkward space where it's low-res enough that scaling tends to look weird, but high-res enough that you can't just use nearest neighbor, call it pixel art, and be done with it.

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03-09-2021 at 03:11 PM
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navithmastero
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Keiya wrote:
There's also the issue of graphics. DROD is in that awkward space where it's low-res enough that scaling tends to look weird, but high-res enough that you can't just use nearest neighbor, call it pixel art, and be done with it.

DROD RPG managed it. Admittedly RPG isn't the best looking game but it's serviceable enough that it certainly doesn't remove from the enjoyment of the game at all :)

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03-09-2021 at 06:57 PM
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Someone Else
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+1)  
I don't think I'd ever want to use this, but then again I'm the sort of person who refuses to use a graphical tileset for games like ADOM or Dwarf Fortress...

If the problem is I would appreciate larger sprites to make things clearer then yes, a smaller room size would help. If the problem is simply I want to build smaller rooms then I can write a script which simulates the room being smaller without a huge amount of effort - just teleport the player in to a corresponding space when they enter the room and out when they leave, killing them if they try and wait on the outside if the room isn't clear. It'd be almost exactly the same as having a smaller room.

I think this FR is major work for minimal benefit.
03-09-2021 at 11:14 PM
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FeedtheGentryii
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+2)  
Yeah, actually, with scripting it seems like it would be easy enough to simulate a smaller room. However, I actually did think it would be beneficial to have it zoomed in as well; would it be easier to add camera controls to some extent? If the camera was zoomed in, this FR would basically be fulfilled.

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03-10-2021 at 12:01 AM
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navithmastero
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (0)  
If you're on Windows you could try Windows Magnifier.

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03-10-2021 at 09:40 AM
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Doom
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Insoluble wrote:
And you are definitely not alone in thinking that the default room size is way too big. Most modern holds never really use the full room size, and a lot of first time architects can't shake the feeling that they need to fill up all that space and the quality of their first hold suffers dramatically as a result.
This is actually covered in the in-game documentation as "working as intended". Having more options is always nice, of course, but I don't think it's a problem in any way to have big rooms as the default.
DROD gives you a detailed 38x32 space, which is typically more than is needed to create puzzles. That extra space is for visual style and to make the rooms seem like a place instead of an abstract minimalist grid.

On a related note, it might be interesting to try using DROD RPG for smaller classic drod puzzles. It doesn't have all of the elements and you need to be creative to get around rooms not resetting. Still, should be more than enough tools to create something interesting. Not to mention that some of the RPG-specific features can add entirely new puzzle potential.
03-10-2021 at 01:50 PM
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FeedtheGentryii
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Doom wrote:
Insoluble wrote:
And you are definitely not alone in thinking that the default room size is way too big. Most modern holds never really use the full room size, and a lot of first time architects can't shake the feeling that they need to fill up all that space and the quality of their first hold suffers dramatically as a result.
This is actually covered in the in-game documentation as "working as intended". Having more options is always nice, of course, but I don't think it's a problem in any way to have big rooms as the default.
DROD gives you a detailed 38x32 space, which is typically more than is needed to create puzzles. That extra space is for visual style and to make the rooms seem like a place instead of an abstract minimalist grid.

On a related note, it might be interesting to try using DROD RPG for smaller classic drod puzzles. It doesn't have all of the elements and you need to be creative to get around rooms not resetting. Still, should be more than enough tools to create something interesting. Not to mention that some of the RPG-specific features can add entirely new puzzle potential.
Wait, DROD RPG isn't just an RPG? Huh... I didn't know that. I thought it was just an RPG with the story and setting of DROD.

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03-10-2021 at 11:24 PM
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Xindaris
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DROD RPG is about as much an RPG as DROD is a dungeon crawler. Like, the term technically applies but it fails to really capture the experience you'll have playing it. It's more like Tower of the Sorcerer, if you've ever heard of that; it takes the mechanical ideas of having stats like HP, attack and defense and fighting monsters to gain more of those stats and creates an optimization problem out of those concepts.

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03-10-2021 at 11:55 PM
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skell
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Smaller rooms are cool. I am a little surprised by the some pushback to the idea I read here.

Fun fact #1: Smaller room size is mostly trivial to be done in DROD, since all of the relevant code always references some variables and not constants.

Fun fact #2: Flash DROD used a modified TCB source code as level editor.

Fun fact #3: I actually had implemented part of the code for smaller room size for TSS, but the idea was scrapped.

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03-11-2021 at 10:54 PM
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Dragon Fogel
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icon Re: Smaller rooms! (+3)  
I don't think the pushback was against the idea of smaller rooms so much as against the idea that it's all that hard to make rooms that use a smaller space. It's only an issue at all if you want the monsters moving from the very start of the room and want entrances to the room on two opposing sides, and even that situation can be handled with some pretty simple scripting.

I guess mobile brained roach queens in a room with an odd dimension on one side couldn't be simulated, though, as the center on that side would be on a row of tiles instead of between them.

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03-11-2021 at 11:46 PM
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skell
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There are certainly ways you can work around most issues but one thing you can't do is aesthetics and the feel of smaller rooms.

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03-12-2021 at 08:17 AM
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FeedtheGentryii
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skell wrote:
There are certainly ways you can work around most issues but one thing you can't do is aesthetics and the feel of smaller rooms.
Yeah, that's why I suggested maybe a camera control thing... but actually, that'd have limited use outside of emulating a smaller room and it would apparently be easier to just add them in.

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03-12-2021 at 08:42 PM
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Keiya
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It would be nice to be able to bring back the work done on the Flash DROD holds, without resorting to tricks to get Flash running. Would people want arbitrary sizes, or two or three options? (The obvious options in the latter case are classic DROD size, FlashDROD size, and maybe RPG size, since there's been a bunch of work done on making assets look nice for that already.)

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03-13-2021 at 06:27 AM
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Doom
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skell wrote:
There are certainly ways you can work around most issues but one thing you can't do is aesthetics and the feel of smaller rooms.
I.. disagree. The feel of a puzzle comes from its logical size and not how you draw it. Focusing on something makes everything around it disappear, so you'll still be processing the same amount of information whether the art is big or small. I even play Baba is You with letterboxing instead of zoom and don't feel as though it suffers for it.

Don't read this as pushback though. This is still a good feature for accessibility reasons. Drodsprites can get pretty small depending on your setup, especially if not running fullscreen.
03-13-2021 at 10:04 AM
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