The Wacky Balance Ideas and Game Mechanics Thread

Discussion in 'Suggestions' started by Manny Pardo, Jan 20, 2024.

  1. Manny Pardo

    Manny Pardo Member

    Hullo! This thread aims to discuss ideas for game balance and general mechanics that yours truly and other people I've been conversing with would want to make it into the game, regardless of how complex, versatile or technically feasible they might be. Some of these ideas are mine and others are from people I've talked with on the two only Dungeons Of Dredmor Discord servers I know of ( Discord of Dredmor #1 | Discord of Dredmor #2 ), while others are derived from games I've played or know about. Without further ado, I'll begin elaborating.
    1. More weapons! More items! More different types of both! - In my endless greed to collect, store, stock up and even hoard everything I can find on the dungeon floor (up to the point of dragging a Diggle to my crib), I have always wanted more to collect and experiment with. Foods, beverages, potions, consumables and equippables are all great, but I think we should have more types of weapons, offhands and other items to expand and explore different mechanics, like new constant upgrade crafts on what I like to call "evolution items", akin to the Silver Shield or the Steel/Clockwork armor lines. Perhaps this could help to increase the already gargantuan (but never big enough) pool of jokes, flavor text and tidbits of lore that we can scavenge from reading labels and descriptions.
    2. Stop hard-coding things, please - Whilst my account on this forum might be relatively new, I've read lots of threads, posts and entries on the different sections, enough to know that there's sections of the game that could work along with user or modder inputs but that currently cannot due to them being hardcoded, like checking equips and inventory, independently detecting when the player has a certain type of item in their hold or equipped, the ability to script mods based on in-game events or to actively vary the cooldowns of abilities. I'll elaborate on another post if needed.
    3. Items could have multiple types - For example, maybe a sword that, apart from the eponymous item type, could have another type to describe how many hands it requires to operate (one handed, two handed) or if there's a specific requirement to use it properly, this is, without debuffs (Light, Medium, Heavy). Maybe "types" aren't the way to go, so that's open to debate. Still, having an additional degree of freedom to work with in item typing could open the gates for more intrincate mechanics, such as the next few entries on this list...
    4. Weapons and Zones of Control - Other turn-based or role play games (Stone Story RPG and Shattered Pixel Dungeon come to mind), different types of weapon have intrinsically different ranges, speeds, requirements and, therefore, different situations where they could be useful. I'll refer to this concept as "Zones of Control" as coined by a particularily brilliant denizen of the Discord(s) of Dredmor. A weapon, apart from its on-hit effects or other such quirks related to its use, should have different ranges and limitations to balance them out in a way that one could think of as logical and sensible. I'll give two such examples that we could use in Dungeons of Dredmor from the two aforementioned games:
      1. In Stone Story RPG, apart from the typical mobile grinding session bullscheisse, weapons can be either one or two-handed. These include Swords, Hammers, Longswords, Wands, Handbows, Crossbows, Shields, Staves, Thrown (Runes, Pebbles) and special Heavy weapons (Bardiche or Warhammer). Handbows, thrown weapons and Wands are particularily interesting, given that they can be equipped along with any other one handed weapon, such as a sword, shield, hammer or any other ranged weapon that isn't a crossbow. Hammers and Crossbows (Either Heavy or Repeating variant) can have special effects, like dealing twice as much damage to heavily armored enemies, but are either slower or bulkier than their equally-ranged counterparts (this is, swords or handbows). I wonder what going akimbo crossbows or having wands that don't burn out after a set amount of turns could do to game balance in Dungeons of Dredmor. Awesome? Absolutely. Fair and balanced...? Up to debate.
      2. In Shattered Pixel Dungeon, the player character cannot equip more than one weapon but all of them have different ranges, accuracy ratings (which can be reduced by debuffs), strength requirements and alter turn economy. For example, we can find Greatswords, Glaives, Warhammers, Whips and Stone Gauntlets at the same level/dungeon depth. With Greatswords acting as a base weapon, with great all-around stats, the game plays around with speeds, accuracies and requirements to use a determined type of weapon:
        • Greatswords can do anywhere from 5 to 30 damage at base level, have a 1-tile range, attack once per turn and hits enemies 85% of the time (base accuracy), all while having a 18 Strength requirement (which, at the point you obtain it, can be easy to acquire either via potions or by upgrading).
        • Glaives have 5-40 damage, 2-tile range, attack once every two turns and hit with base accuracy. Requires 18 strength.
        • Warhammers have 5-24 damage, 1-tile range, attack once per turn and hit with 105% accuracy. Requires 18 Strength.
        • Whips have 3-15 damage, 3-tile range, attack once per turn and hits with base accuracy. Requires 14 Strength.
        • Stone Gauntlets have 5-15 damage, 1-tile range, attack twice(!) per turn and hit with base accuracy. Requires 18 Strength.
      3. How could we translate this to Dungeons of Dredmor? Well, we have a handful of examples of either enemies, projectiles or even the player taking multiple actions per turn and have the capacity to delay actions via stuns or dazing, while also having templates and targeting modes for several spells. I'd say that different weapon types need to have different ranges and speeds, with daggers being the quickest and shortest and polearms being the longest non-ranged weapon and also having an action penalty, since it's a hefty piece of equipment. Thrown weaponry could also have a minimum range or, maybe, in the case of crossbows (and maybe future alternate types of ranged weaponry?), have a reload time?
    5. Attacks and Spells with Material Requirements - What if we had a makeshift cannon of sorts? A weapon that enhances the damage of other ranged weapons, has a damaging close-range blast and some knockback... but all of them depending on what explosive charge you're using? For example, using the cannon instead of a crossbow to throw Softballs and using Makeshift Bombs as charge for a respectable 3 Crushing damage increase! This could also apply to spells. For instance, a spell that, aside from Mana, requires specific item(s) in your inventory to work and consumes them! Imagine making a moat or liquid pool of pain by using a spell and a usually non-consumable reagent, like Alchemical Ooze.
    6. Dual Wield remake - This one is a doozy... I've seen ideas to refactor this skill tree in many other posts and have done some excruciating, extensive research on the matter to balance this while implementing things like sword'n'board, two-handing a weapon or even coping with the fact that you can dual wield polearms or warhammers (Power Stance much?). Maybe adding stance play into this could help a bit? Maybe one stance allows you to do two attacks in the same turn, one per weapon, potentially triggering more on-hit effects and another one that allows you to use both of them at the same time for BIG damage, but only once per turn?