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Butabee

Roguelike / NetHack Clone

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So I'm working on a somewhat roguelike game, with infinite procedural maps, while making it multiplayer for up to 4 players, and it will also have an online leaderbord. I'm drawing most things I want to put into the game from games like NetHack. As a more action based version, I'm wondering what people would like to see in a game like this? The main features I have atm are infinite procedural maps, along with infinite item and level progression. The main goal of the game is to climb the leaderboard. So what do you like/dislike about roguelikes?

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one question that is kind of offtopic: how will you handle the multiplayer part as most roguelikes are turn based?

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The game I have in mind will be action based. One of the key areas I'm doing differently, but will have some abilities on a cooldown, like trap search, and such.

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What I dislike about roguelikes would mainly be the lack of nice art, the lack of story, and the permadeath with no game+ feature.  The only roguelike I really like is Azure Dreams (PS1) because it had nice art, a home base town to level up, and when you died in the dungeon you just ended up in the home base with no loot, you didn't have to utterly start over.  There was even an actual end to the story. wub.png

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Well, my game isn't doing much in the graphics department, it has pixel art around nes/atari resolution but with more colors and hopefully, they're more readable and attractive. I think I remember you saying you don't like pixel art, but I love it and high quality 3D models are out of my ability.


I'd like to have something like a procedural quest generator, but something like that might have to wait for after release.


I like having a little direction also.


I don't really like perma death either, I don't think I'll have it in, but I would like to have a death penalty. I don't know about losing loot since in my game you won't be able to carry a lot. For gear you only have whatever is equipped, and have to make a choice to pickup a gear piece and leave the other behind or not, of the same slot. I could have experience loss or something.


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It's true that I dislike pixel art, you have a good memory.  I don't have any problem with 2D art, but it has to be fairly high-res, whether vector or anime raster or what.  But, I'm not a fan of roguelikes in general, so it probably doesn't actually matter what I like.  One thing though, have you played Rogue Legacy?  I've gotten 3 recommendations that I should play that in the past year alone, so it's probably something worth looking into in the field of rogue-likes.

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I don't really play roguelikes, so take my thoughts with a grain of salt: some of the following may be less issues in roguelikes than a mismatch between what roguelikes offer and what I enjoy. That said:

 

The main thing that I dislike in roguelikes, I think, is the repetition: that the game seems to be built around the idea that the player will go through the various dungeons over and over again. For me, that can get rather boring, even if the levels are randomly generated.

 

I'm also not a fan of being at the mercy of the game's random number generator: I don't want the success of a run to depend on whether or not I get good loot, or whether I roll well on my attacks. Building on that, I really don't like combat that's based heavily on random numbers: I really, really don't like being told that I missed simply because the random number generator said so.

 

One point that isn't my own, but that might be worth repeating, is something that I recall TotalBiscuit bringing up in some of his reviews: roguelikes tend to have rather shallow combat mechanics, and on top of that tend to provide static bonuses far more than active abilities (the latter of which tend to provide more decisions for the player by providing more versatility).

 

In fact, it might be worth going to TotalBiscuit's channel and looking up reviews of some recent roguelikes and rogue-lites: I seem to recall that he gives a fair bit of detail in his thoughts on a given game. Risk of Rain in particular (if I'm remembering the right game) might be a good one to look at, since I think that I recall that he quite liked that one.

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It's true that I dislike pixel art, you have a good memory.  I don't have any problem with 2D art, but it has to be fairly high-res, whether vector or anime raster or what.  But, I'm not a fan of roguelikes in general, so it probably doesn't actually matter what I like.  One thing though, have you played Rogue Legacy?  I've gotten 3 recommendations that I should play that in the past year alone, so it's probably something worth looking into in the field of rogue-likes.

I like 2D Vector art too, but Unity doesn't support it natively, and I'm not really up to learning some third party plugin atm, and plus, I've been slaving away today on some animations :P

 

I might check out Rogue Legacy, I've seen it on steam but havn't been too inclined to get it.

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I don't really play roguelikes, so take my thoughts with a grain of salt: some of the following may be less issues in roguelikes than a mismatch between what roguelikes offer and what I enjoy. That said:

 

The main thing that I dislike in roguelikes, I think, is the repetition: that the game seems to be built around the idea that the player will go through the various dungeons over and over again. For me, that can get rather boring, even if the levels are randomly generated.

 

I'm also not a fan of being at the mercy of the game's random number generator: I don't want the success of a run to depend on whether or not I get good loot, or whether I roll well on my attacks. Building on that, I really don't like combat that's based heavily on random numbers: I really, really don't like being told that I missed simply because the random number generator said so.

 

One point that isn't my own, but that might be worth repeating, is something that I recall TotalBiscuit bringing up in some of his reviews: roguelikes tend to have rather shallow combat mechanics, and on top of that tend to provide static bonuses far more than active abilities (the latter of which tend to provide more decisions for the player by providing more versatility).

 

In fact, it might be worth going to TotalBiscuit's channel and looking up reviews of some recent roguelikes and rogue-lites: I seem to recall that he gives a fair bit of detail in his thoughts on a given game. Risk of Rain in particular (if I'm remembering the right game) might be a good one to look at, since I think that I recall that he quite liked that one.

I like having some luck involved gameplay, but I think the trick is finding the right balance of it. Like if you get a bad roll, you have increased chance of a good roll for the next one or two.

 

I agree that a succession of misses or fails is frusterating though, enough to make a rare string of good rolls to not be enough to balance it out.

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As long as, it isn't too much luck and involve less player's decision.

Sword of the Stars: The Pit is the good simple of what I think it's bad, everything in game is pretty much luck based, all guns, no ammo or all health, no weapons. Ranged weapon is distance-based not direction-based, so if go into room filled with gun, you're pretty much dead, especially one of them can incapacitate you for very long turn.

My favourite one is One Way Heroics, that's quite balance in player's decision and randomness.

So, I think it should be player's fault instead of pure luck decided you should fail, also there should be at least minimum object for something, or at least something will drop.

And what if player died in multilayer? can they be revive or they just sit and watch?

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For myself at least, it's not just having a succession of poor rolls that I don't like, it's having my actions be subject to the whims of the dice. It is, however, specific to my actions: I rather like randomisation of the playing field--both physical and metaphorical. For example, I don't like my hits and misses being determined entirely by die-rolls; I want my hits and misses to stem from my skill. (I don't mind a small element of random number generation; for example, I'd be happy enough if spells occasionally produced a more- or less- powerful effect, or a slightly different one, or if sword-hits were occasionally "critical" hits, etc.) On the other hand, I do like having randomly-generated levels, and randomly-generated loot; I like the idea, for example, of getting a sword on one run and a wand of fireball on the other. This sort of randomisation changes which options I have available, rather than changing the outcome of my selection from those options.

 

Put another way, think of it like a card game: I like playing with a shuffled deck, not knowing what options I'm going have available in a given hand, but I don't want to be told that my play simply doesn't work just because a die-roll says so.

 

However, this is very much personal preference; you say that you do like randomness in your gameplay, which is fair enough.

Edited by Thaumaturge

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I'm debating on whether or not I should add mandatory friendly fire for multiplayer. I was thinking of making it mandatory so players can choose to help or hinder other players. Players who are marked as PKs wouldn't get anything by killing others except maybe the player's name they killed, added to a public list, since these kinds of players primarily get their reward just by the act of griefing. Once the PK is killed, a portion of his gold/xp is distributed to all the players he killed.

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For myself at least, it's not just having a succession of poor rolls that I don't like, it's having my actions be subject to the whims of the dice. It is, however, specific to my actions: I rather like randomisation of the playing field--both physical and metaphorical. For example, I don't like my hits and misses being determined entirely by die-rolls; I want my hits and misses to stem from my skill. (I don't mind a small element of random number generation; for example, I'd be happy enough if spells occasionally produced a more- or less- powerful effect, or a slightly different one, or if sword-hits were occasionally "critical" hits, etc.) On the other hand, I do like having randomly-generated levels, and randomly-generated loot; I like the idea, for example, of getting a sword on one run and a wand of fireball on the other. This sort of randomisation changes which options I have available, rather than changing the outcome of my selection from those options.

 

I like what Michael Brough did with ZAGA-33 and other games, in which the principle is that randomization of the world is enough, and otherwise you don't throw dice.  (In practice, some enemy movement is random as well, but in principle you could do away with that as well if you have deterministic enemies that use the environment to decide where to go.)

 

My own thought is that for each source of outcome randomness (like throwing dice to determine combat resolution), the player should have an associated choice about how to mitigate the randomness.  Equipment that avoids the negative effects of certain die rolls, but has other drawbacks, "bunting" stances that don't miss but don't critical hit, moves that leave you entirely open to attack but guarantee a hit in the next turn, anything that allows the player some say in how rolls are interpreted.

 

Speaking of card games, one thing I like about many card games is that no individual card is universally bad, but each card might be good or bad according to the choices I make.  When the luck is against me, I can't entirely blame the cards, because had I chosen a different strategy that card may have been exactly what I needed.  Likewise, if I had choices w.r.t. randomness mitigation, then when the bad "roll" happens I can't just say "this sucks, I'm so unlucky", I say "oh, that's partially my fault, I could have taken the other choice".

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