mysterious portals 0-0

Discussion in 'Realm of the Diggle Gods' started by medicvalues, Jan 3, 2012.

  1. Other than being a WereDiggle, is there another way to dig through walls?
  2. OmegaJasam

    OmegaJasam Member

    I think the last golemnacy skill.

    Also if it's a hidden room that could imply destructable walls, in which case a large selection of aoe skills work,
  3. Ryvian

    Ryvian Member

    If the wall is intentionally destructible, standard explosives would work. If they're by nature, of the non-destructible kind, using the ICBM bolt is capable of clearing away a large portion of walls.
  4. Godwin

    Godwin Member

    Since when do we need to be told that we have done a good job before we appreciate ourselves for having done that good job?
    Since when is the reward not your own pride in having survived, you yourself telling yourself 'good job mate, nice!'?
    Since when did people become so incredibly dependant on others telling them they did well, or reliant on rewards to give them a good feeling?
    Instead of letting the experience speak for itself?
    Instead of having the rewarding experience of slaying those monsters, leveling faster, and a good chance at powerful items?
    Instead of making up their own minds about themselves?

    Just asking ;p
  5. Wi§p

    Wi§p Member

    I agree with your points Godwin, but I would personally like the possibility of some kind of rare loot at the end of something challenging (like with monster zoos) just for some added encouragement to go into the portal. There would still be a high chance of it being useless for your build, or underpowered ofcourse ^^
  6. Ryvian

    Ryvian Member

    Boss Monster guarding the exit portal. Something like a unique monster not found in any other dungeon level.
  7. Lorrelian

    Lorrelian Member

    You've encountered the Eater of Worlds! =D
  8. OmegaJasam

    OmegaJasam Member

    I think you've missed the point of these kind of rewards in these kind of games.

    Rougelikes usualy have very good risk/reward systems. The portal, as it stands is a VERY high risk, low reward option, and as such most people will ignore it.

    Put a certain level of reward at the end, and suddenly you have a very high risk/chance of high reward senario.

    It's basicaly bait, and encourages you to do it as standard practice as opposed to as an extra thing for the sake of it.

    The closest example is the evil chests. If your a under geared character, they have a high chance of holding gear you can use.... Or something that will destroy you. Or something that sells well.

    If evil chests just had regular loot 90% of the time, you'd avoid them in such a senario.

    It's all about incetivisieing the players to take the risk, and making the risk part of the gameplay, as opposed to being an 'optional extra challange' that you do for the sake of beating it.

    Not that theres anything wrong with that kind of gameplay, but it's definatly cooler to have some kind of concrete goal (like monster zoos) in what point the 'challange' is beaten.
  9. Godwin

    Godwin Member

    I agree for some things, like clearing a monster zoo, but the portals for me are simply optional difficulties for those who want a harder play experience. Like in other roguelikes people inventing to go vegetarian, or don't kill or so. The same way I make small rules for myself. I can make the rule to have to enter a portal as soon as I see it for example.
    If you don't like the extra challenge, then don't enter. Just like you can choose dwarven moderation instead of going rogue.
  10. My desired view summarized...

    - High chance of all monsters being difficult/challanging. Population could be (Discovered levels x 2). Level 1 would have 2 monsters, level 15 would have 30.
    - Dungeon size randomized.
    - Low chance of high reward item(S), treasure room, mushroom cave (those are cool, I found a room with 9 flannels), artifacts, etc.
    - Low chance of additional portal to dungeon level -1, -2, -3, -n. Potential to chain portal levels, ala Hellgate London.
    - Mid/Low chance of hidden rooms, higher quality of vending machines.
    - No mini map. Meh, this is just me. At a dat bit of challenge.

    This type of thing would be quality experience bait, with a low potential of quality loot.

    Also, I posted in another thread about the portal rooms being way WAY to easy at higher dungeon levels.
    The last one I went through on DL14, I never attacked a monster. I let them attack and I'd one shot them on a counter.
    Wi§p and tehrei like this.
  11. tehrei

    tehrei Member

    Sure, you make a good point and I partially agree with you. I'm gonna try to explain my personal view on this, but just as a disclaimer these are just my thoughts and opinions; they're not absolute, I'm probably gonna change my mind over time anyway, and I'm not necessarily correct. Here goes:

    First of all, what are we dealing with?
    An environmental feature in a game which can and will change your progression through the game. More specifically, it's a portal that takes us to a pseudo-randomly generated dungeon, inside of an already psudo-randomly generated dungeon. Going through this portal will take you to a "new" level in the dungeon, which will be themed and generated according to (please correct me if I'm wrong here) the very same set of rules that applies to another level in this dungeon.

    What different sort of benefits does this feature bring to the game?
    In terms of environment, the Mysterious Portal does not offer anything significantly different from what we (the player(s)) already have access to in the main dungeon. I'm not saying this is good or bad, I'm just stating facts based on my own experiences; as I did not personally not find any unique enemies/gameplay features/room layouts/tilesets/etc. I'm not saying that any of those need to be in place either.

    Now, if we take things unique about the portals out of the picture, how would you make portals attractive from a players point of view? There are several options here, but the most obvious would likely be that it grants a resource of some kind to the player. Once again, the most obvious resource would probably be EXP(1), followed closely by money(2) and equipment(3). Those 3 things will remain in demand the entire game -- more or less. Another resource, which is more situational and dependent on the player's build and overall progression, would be consumables(4). Do note that the numbering here is mostly to give myself a brief overview, they're not necessarily indicative of any hierarchy as far as usefulness or demand goes.

    Obviously, a dungeon feature that just gives you a significant amount of either resource would have to be extremely rare in order to be balanced. Alternatively, you could alter the amount of resources to the point where they are no longer significant, and thus be able to make said feature a bit more common. Both of those options are, in my opinion, fairly uninteresting, especially seeing as there are already features in place for all these things. Statues of Dredmor for (1), Chests/Drops/Random rooms filled with gold for number (2, (and also 4)), and UberChests for (3).

    Now the logical option would be to match the potential value of these resources with the risk of a negative effect. For instance: Evil Chests' often contain amazing artifacts, but by opening one you also risk facing a named monster which could hurt you and thus force you to use consumables(4) such as precious bolts, healing potions and other stuff that you'd rather not use. In order to regain the consumable, you will probably have to spend gold(2) at a shop or vending machine, or choose to risk going without said consumable. There is of course also the risk of the monster outright killing you, which is especially harsh if you're playing with permadeath on.
    A lower risk and lower reward feature would be the Anvil of Krong, which could make your items better, but you also run the risk of making an item worse than it was to begin with.

    How does the risk-to-reward-ratio look regarding portals?

    The only reward that is 100% guaranteed from a portal is EXP(1). You're also very likely to find at least some gold(2). As far as number 3 -- equipment or artifacts -- goes, your chances are about the same as diving through the main dungeon. It is however worth noting that any progress made in a portal does not influence your overall progression through the game as strongly as going through the main dungeon would, and the amount gained of either resource is not likely to be any different from what you can also gain by going through the main dungeon instead.
    Personally I have always had my skills maxed out and at least 300k in my pockets by the time I get to the lower levels (playing on GR with PD on of course), so I don't think I would argue that the additional resources which could potentially be gained is a necessity in order to kill Dredmor.

    That was the rewards, so let me go through some of the risks that I can see.
    Out-of-depth monsters: You find a portal on level 2 and go through it only to run straght into the arms of a Muscle Diggle! If you have some means of teleportation: good for you! Otherwise gg.
    Out-of-depth traps: Similar to the one above, but shouldn't be lethal on their own if you use good positioning. Try to use them against the enemies if you can. If you're unlucky with the layout you'll just have to eat some food and take whatever punishment the RNG has given you.
    Corruption: Either one of the above could be the source of this, though a Blob of Corruption can hurt even if it's not OOD. All it takes is some bad luck and one of those on the other side of the door... Do note that the actual risk of corruption might not be any larger than what you'd face in the main dungeon, assuming you're prepared to deal with the sources of it.
    Assorted nasties that aren't OOD: If you still have to waste resources to take down the obstacles here there's a high risk that you're gonna walk out with a small loss or barely breaking even.


    In conclusion (well, kind of)

    Why would I want to through a portal? You suggest that the challenge in itself should be motivation enough, but there's nothing there that could be any more challenging than what I will find in the main dungeon, since it's generated in much the same way.
    Could anything I find in portal really be more challenging than a monster zoo on level 14-15, or even Lord Dredmor himself?
    As far as I know, the answer to that would be no.
    Would going through a portal directly help me on my way to winning the game?
    Not really. Maybe if I'm starved for EXP (which has never happened to me). Otherwise it's just an optional area that can be skipped, unless I'd want to grind enemies for some reason (I've personally never felt that way), it doesn't bring me any closer to Level 15. In fact, it will probably only slow my descent through the dungeon down.
    For the same reason I don't feel like going through a portal is rewarding, it's not about someone else telling me I did good, since what I did isn't any different from how I'd play through the main dungeon.
    Your point about experience and slaying monsters is also answered by the same point.
    About having a shot at possibly finding good items, I don't find that rewarding. Actually finding a great item on the other hand, is very much so rewarding. I have yet to find such an item in a portal.

    So yeah, I hoped that wall of text helped answer your questions ^^As you see, it's not at all about a lack of self-affirmation that bothers me about portals. It's a lack of purpose.

    tl;dr Portals are the same as the rest of the dungeon. Only you don't progress through the dungeon. Why should I find that more rewarding than going through the main dungeon?

    EDIT: The above poster has some very good, and solid suggestions, that I absolutely agree with. Also, portals after dungeon level 12~ are usually a joke in terms of difficulty, so I can't say that I see portals as "optional, challenging levels". They tend do be either close to impossible or ridiculously easy.
    Godwin likes this.
  12. Godwin

    Godwin Member

    First of all thank you for putting so much time in it. Read your post and it gives a good overview.
    I think the quoted part is the essence of why we differ of opinion about portals.

    Firstly, the challenge in the main dungeon is the same IF you, upon reaching your very first levelup, then proceed down to a stairs, and then the next, and then the next and the next and the next, then slay some monsters and then return.
    But who'd do that? Plus, finding so many stairs next to each other all leading down to a few high challenging monsters is extremely unlikely, so not practical at all. Therefore I have to conclude that no, you cannot have the same challenge in the main dungeon.

    Secondly, I want to make the game harder for me. I want to die 9 out of 10 times. If I use the main dungeons without the portals I do not die. I might die once in a few starts (with random builds!), but nowhere near 9 out of 10.
    So portals to me are the solution to the problem of the game being too easy. They're the perfect (because they're optional) tool to use together with self-imposed rules to make the game harder.

    I would not really mind a nice viewscreen with "Grats! Take this pear!" (nothing too powerful please), but I was just coming from a conversation about being your own fully grown up sovereign human being and taking responsability for your own life and creating your own life's path. And that's also why I reacted like I did :)
    And I still think it are good question to ask, once in a while.
  13. tehrei

    tehrei Member

    Ah, okay, that clears a lot of stuff up. I can see what you mean about using it as a self-imposed challenge, and I might do something like that myself soon enough. I found that even on Going Rogue with PD it's really easy as long as you survive through the first 2 or 3 levels, I mean those can be challenging with some builds, but overall... yeah. I still feel like portals would benefit from being slightly redesigned though, because even as a challenge they feel somewhat incomplete to me. [[Kind of off-topic: Though I wouldn't mind an additional increase in difficulty and an altogether new difficulty setting would be awesome imo.]]

    Also, any reward given could possibly be on par with, but almost never stronger than anything that you would get from a quest/zoo/uberchest. The small possibility of getting something really good would have to be tiny enough that it doesn't happen on every playthrough, even if you'd go through every portal on every playthrough. That way, if you luck out, it'll feel really awesome, just because it's so rare of an occasion. Statistically speaking it probably wouldn't be worth clearing portals even then, but it would definitely create some opportunities for bragging rights ^^


    [Really off-topic]: Oh and I don't mind dying a lot either, I play Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup way too much, and I've only finished that game with like 1 character out of at least 1000 :p I keep challenging myself to win with all 15-runes (you only need 3 to actually "win" the game) and sometimes I just play ridiculous race/background combinations. Even if I didn't try those challenges I doubt I'd have a lot more wins under my belt. So, basically what I'm trying to say is that if you lose a lot, then your precious few wins end up feeling so much more rewarding.
  14. Ryvian

    Ryvian Member

    Guaranteed boss monster at the end of mysterious portal would would add to the thrill, add flavor to an otherwise bland experience, bigger risk and chance to die, and a serious challenge. Currently the unpredictable aspect of mysterious portals means that finding them on lower levels would be boring and like someone already said, offer no challenge, no reward, and serve only to slow you down.
  15. Borodin

    Borodin Member

    It might help if there is a reward that is not merely commensurate with what you face, but also appropriate to what you wear, and what you wield. Just saying. It's one thing to face a Monster Zoo without having to go anywhere special, another to drag your character through a dungeon with only one hope of escape, and a Dirty Big Thingee to kill before you can find the portal back.
  16. Chopkinsca

    Chopkinsca Member

    I accidently entered one on level 7. It was hidden behind an eyeball shrine. I was lucky to find the exit before I came across anything overly powerful to kill me.
  17. Essence

    Essence Will Mod for Digglebucks

    generally if you're on DL7, you've got what it takes to hack through anything a Mysterious Portal will throw at you. Just gotta treat unknowns like they're all Dremor, and you'll be good. :)
  18. Lorrelian

    Lorrelian Member

    Actually, a healthy amount of paranoia about any enemy you've never seen before is a good idea.
  19. Nicholas

    Nicholas Technology Director Staff Member

    There should be a reward at the end of the portal, I agree.

    Exile, Essence, Wisse and 5 others like this.