(town map changes)
before we get started with something actually interesting, i want to put in a quick note that the other towns (hauksness, cantlin, kol, and rimuldar) are probably going to be good to go as is. i'll leave it at that for now.
i've been putting this off for too long. after i got started on it, i realized it wasn't half as scary as i was making it out to be. sure, i'm not sure what to do with most of the monsters yet, but i'm going to wing it and its going to be fine. lets start out with the most basic of monsters.
lets cheat a bit and define the monster's graphic representation. i know its not really a big part of the ai, but it helps to show what the thing looks like for subsequent illustrative designs. here we go:
its a pretty simple creature, just a blob of jelly. i'm taking inspiration from zelda: link's awakening for quite a bit of the monster. since the reds and blues are a little different, i figured i'd just pull from zelda ii and go with distance and height to differ them. in order for the monster to move about, it will make little jumps in whatever direction its moving:
just about the same as they do in zelda ii. in zelda ii the reds were weaker, so its a mere color reverse to get what i'm aiming for. the red slimes will do big upward jumps like they do in zelda:la towards the hero as a part of their attack ai.
the slimes will have a field of view like this. if the player sprite (or clip area?) clips that, the monster 'sees' the player and then goes into attack mode. the blue slimes are weaker than the reds, so we might want to give them a smaller field of view.
the metal slimes (metaly) are going to be insane. huge view radius, can cast Hurt/Firebal. massive DEF, seen only if you can catch the bugger to hit it. its going to be doing alot of running away at really good speeds. i imagine you'll probably have to do some herding to get this thing under your blade.
lets get to some general stuff about slimes. more pictars, yay~
here we're representing roam mode. the slime doesn't have a target and roams around looking for one. as the slime roams, it can be moving in some random direciton - maybe it should hop (n <= ~3) times in the same direction or something. when it stops moving, it sits and jiggles for some random amount of time, like in zelda ii. in the case of the red and metal slimes, it can also randomly jump in some direction - again like in zelda ii.
in attack mode, the slime can move directly toward the player much like it moves randomly in roam mode. it can hop directly toward the player, again like in roam mode. hm. i guess the only difference attack mode places on the ai is focused direction. oh, and the metal slimes will move away very quickly instead of toward - though they will jump toward with increasted jump distance, across the screen maybe. the metal slimes also cast Firebal at you. i guess i already said all that.
i keep forgetting to mention that touching the monster is all it takes to take damage from it. i don't want that to be the case for all monsters - but in this case, the slimes are toxic or whatever.
well, first i tried to think about action games that had knights in them, and how they fought you. obviously Zelda i, ii, Link to the Past, and Link's Awakening all come to mind immediately. only in ii do the knights swing their weapon - except the bow knights in lttp, and the mace knights in both lttp and la.. i might be able to use them somehow.
other games that had knights that fought with blades.. well, chronicle of the radia war did, as did crystalis. in both of these games, the knights thrust their sword at you like how you use the sword in zelda 1. then there's final fantasy adventure, where the knights did the same thing, but the werewolves had an arcing attack like you did. it feels more 'right' to let the knights attack like you can. i'd say that it would probably be more fair for you if they had a wind-up delay or something, so you could get in and attack and get out again. each stronger knight would have a better wind-up delay so you'd have to be more careful with choosing your shots.
i want these mofos to be tough! the axe knight (armored knight in dw1) is supposed to be the 3rd hardest monster in the game to fight, in terms of raw hp and attack power. i mentioned in my notebook that they should be slow due to their heavy armor - but i have to take care not to make them easy to kill. lots of def and hp will protect him only for so long. make his attacks swift and deadly and you'll learn to fear him.
these guys should have fovs set in front of their facing direction. if they're not looking at you, then you should be able to sneak around them. here's a visual aid ^_^
get in behind them and you get a free hit - but only one. when you strike a knight, no matter if he sees you or not, that puts him immediately into attack mode and he'll turn around right away to fight you.
'nuff said on that one. however, lets go through the differences between our lovely knights. the weakest knight doesn't wield any weapon in the game, but i say if you're going to give an axe they're going to swing to the other two, then this guy should get something weaker like a copper sword or something to that effect. anyways, he doesn't do much but pace around until he sees you, and then he attacks.
the strongest knight weilds an axe and shield, and can cast healmore to recover. though that puts your efforts behind, in my opinion they're much less dangerous than the "middle-weight" of the knight family. the mad knight has the middle-ground attack and hitpoint max, midway between the weaker and the stronger.
the one thing it has, is the sleep spell. that is the single most powerful weapon a monster in the game can have. any monster that uses it will most likely kill you; if you're not dead when you wake up during their merciless beating, you're probably going to be close. there's no protection from being put to sleep, no defense whatsoever against it. you just luck out if the monster attacks enough times for you to kill it before it casts.
i'm realizing that i haven't really said much about the sleep condition and spell. to be honest, its the worst part of the game - it doesn't work when you need it to most, and it almost always means your death when used against you. i want to remove it altogether, to be honest. but since i can't do that, i have to look at it and figure out just what i'm going to do about it.
[working] i just played the game and tried using Sleep on a variety of monsters with my lv30 warrior. most things could be put to sleep, but the wizard/druinlord and green dragon would not go to sleep. i didn't try it on the undead, but i can't see how the undead would sleep. i can understand a dragon's natural magic resistance, as well as a magician's. so some monster classes are immune, and the rest seems that there is a 50/50 chance of waking from it each round. if there were a magic stat, we could use it to figure out chance of success, and length of sleep.
in all honesty, i think that if you're physically struck once (as in the ff games) you should be brought out of the sleep state. i'm not sure how being struck from magic is any different - pain is pain, and thats what i would imagine is waking you up.. in this game though, we could use it every bit as much as a way to get away from monsters as we could to use it to help destroy them. if i make it fair to use, i can see it being a worthwhile spell. it just wasn't reliable enough in the original, and i didn't use it at all.
obviously the representation for the state is going to be zzz (not the snot bubble in manga/anime). each monster not immune to sleep should have a sleep animation to go along with the zzz. it will be a single facing animation (and the death animation will be too). casting the spell itself made purple bubbles appear around the monster. i'm not sure how purple bubbles imply sleepiness, but there it is. it'll probably be an area effect, focused in front of the player sprite (whichever the player's facing) and if a monster is caught in that area, sleep status is rolled.
so we can go with rounds and then 50/50 tests to get out of it, rounds of like 1/2sec (long enough that a single round is noticable) and possibly 'miss' or something popping out to show the rounds. something has to be noticable and obvious to tell you whether or not you missed it. maybe a Z will pop out of you every miss? something obvious, anyways. it'd be nice if you could affect the sleep duration somehow. i'd hate to do button-mashing, but i've seen it before.
i'll wrap it up here. i should go with some of the animals next.