Author Topic: Old School Computer Game Update 7: Specialist Magic-Users & Numerous New Spells  (Read 1503 times)

Offline Outlander78

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Hi folks.

I have updated Old School Computer Game (link in my signature). Your existing saved games will not work with this new release - before you download and play this version, please load up any games with characters you want to keep and export them to disk in the manage party view.

Changes:

Added specialist magic-user classes:  Abjurers, Conjurers, Diviners, Enchanters, Illusionists, Invokers, Necromancers and Transmuters

Added demi-human specialists:  Elf Diviner, Elf Enchanter, Gnome (now specializes in illusion), Half-Elf Conjurer, Half-Elf Diviner, Half-Elf Enchanter, Half-Elf Transmuter

Added half-elves - like elves, they are essentially fighter/magic-user hybrids, but are better fighters and worse magic-users than full-blooded elves.

"Attack roll required" spells are now easier to hit with.  The target's AC is 9, modified only by their dexterity bonus.  If the caster is making a ranged attack, they have the THAC0 of a fighter; for touch attacks, they use their own base THAC0.

Blinded characters can no longer aim missile weapons or cast targeted spells; this severely limits blinded spell casters' available spells and creatures that depend on ranged weapons.  Blinding characters, or using darkness-causing spells, is now a useful tactic.

Some spells with area effects (e.g. wall of fire, blade barrier) now block vision.  This means they limit spell casters and creatures using ranged attacks.  Spells that block vision are identified in their descriptions.  As shooting a moving target with a bow, or casting a spell, requires precision, I was liberal in considering which spells block vision - a spell does not have to cause absolute darkness to make a ranged shot impossible.

Some new magical spells are only available to specialists of that school.  I have used this as a way to make specialists ... special, and to give them spells that would otherwise be a level or two higher.  The standard spells that were already in the game remain available to all magic-users.

New General Spells:  Armour, Chromatic Orb, Clone, Darkness, Consign To Oblivion, Continual Darkness, Detect Evil, Detect Secret Doors, Dismiss From Mind, Disjunction, Divining Rod, Enervation, Expeditious Retreat, Floating Disc, Fog Cloud, Forget, Greater Malison, Imprisonment, Irresistible Dance, Locate Object, Magic Missile Storm, Magnificent Magic Missile Storm, Major Magic Missile Storm, Malison, Mass Invisibility, Monster Summoning I-VII, Permanency, Protection From Normal Missiles, Regeneration, Shadow Magic Cone Of Cold, Shadow Magic Fireball, Shadow Magic Ice Storm, Shadow Magic Lightning Bolt, Simulacrum, Summon Shadows, Temporal Reinstatement, Temporal Stasis, Time Stop, Trollish Fortitude, Wail of the Banshee, Wall of Fog

New School Spells (spells limited to school specialists):  Filter, Foresight, Magic Missile II, Premonition, Presience, Prying Eyes, Wall of Darkness

Modified Spells
 - Blur now grants a reflex saving throw to avoid damage from missile attacks
 - Chill Touch inflicts more damage, and weakness instead of paralysis
 - Clairvoyance used to give information about the Known World; now it gives information about what is on the other side of a door
 - Cone of Cold no longer has a saving throw for half damage (how does one dodge temperature anyway? :)
 - Flaming Sphere now blocks vision
 - Heal is now unique to the school of Necromancy
 - Magic Missile now does less damage
 - Rainbow Pattern is now a 4th level spell (up from 3rd)
 - Read Magic now scribes all of the caster's scrolls into their spellbook (excepting those the already know, and those they are not allowed to cast)
 - Scorcher now affects five squares (up from 4), but is capped at 3d6 damage (down from 1d6/level)
 - Shocking Grasp now does more damage
 - Slow gets a saving throw, but with a -4 penalty
 
New Map Generation Style:  'gauntlet'

New Maps:  three new crypt templates

New Tiles:  angled and curved corner tiles, descending stairs

If you find any problems with the game, or want to propose improvements, please post them here.

Thank you for playing!
Please try my old school computer game (link) and tell me what you think.

Offline ProphetSword

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Noooooooo!  I just got my party to 3rd level!  Now I'll have to restart!   ;D
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Outlander78

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Ha.

From the party management page, drop each member and save them to disk.  When you download the new game, import them back in.  Your save game won't work, but the characters march on.

I hate losing PCs I built, so I maintain forwards compatibility for them.

To make matters worse, another update is around the corner - I finally had the time to make some more handcrafted levels.  They just need testing now.
Please try my old school computer game (link) and tell me what you think.

Offline ProphetSword

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Probably for the best anyway.  Somehow, my 3rd level party fell down a hole and can't escape a dungeon because a nasty dragon they can't beat is guarding the only exit.  At 3rd level, they are massively outmatched, considering he paralyzes half of them immediately and kills most of them in a single breath.  Even when they do survive, only the mage throwing magic missile can damage him...nobody else has ever landed a hit on him at all...ever...in dozens of combats.  At 3rd level, the best my mage has been able to do is just knock him down to 5 hit points...

So, yeah...
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Outlander78

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I need to fix that encounter.

Ctrl alt shift brings up cheat codes that you can use to teleport back to town.
Please try my old school computer game (link) and tell me what you think.

Offline ProphetSword

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Ctrl alt shift brings up cheat codes that you can use to teleport back to town.

Cheat?!!

While I'm glad the option is there, this game reminds me of playing AD&D, and the best thing about AD&D was surviving against the odds.

I took your advice and exported my characters and started a new game with the newest version.  Those bandits didn't know what hit them...and I got back a lot of magical items very quickly.
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline KTG

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Hello Outlander78,
I've been playing your game for about 2 weeks.  Nice job!  It really is an old school dungeon crawl and the main thing is - it is fun.  Its kept me playing almost every day, which doesn't happen too often.  I like the tactical combat, the wide variety of classes, monsters, spells, etc.  I did have a few possible bugs to report and some other comments.
Possible bugs:
- I have a ring of protection +1, which says that it improves AC and saves, but it only improves saves - no change to AC.
- I have a potion of antidote which says it restores one poisoned person.  I had a character poisoned, but when I tried to use it, it said no one in the party was poisoned.
- Dwarf and Halfling XP progression, according to the description, seems a bit odd starting at level 8.  Dwarf, for example, says level 7 = 70400 XPs and then level 8 jumps up to 200,000 XPs.  Maybe that's right I don't know for sure (I haven't gotten that far and am more familiar with AD&D than these rules), but other classes have a much more 'normal' progression.
- At a town I seemed to be losing gold each new time I brought up the town menu and went to a shop.  I did nothing in between, but I saw the amount of gold go down by a small amount each time.  This has happened more than once, but I haven't noticed it recently.  I do have a tither in the party (Undead Hunter), but the amount was not going down by 10% - I think it was less than 10%.  And in any case, I thought it should only do that when you put money in the bank and maybe when you sell something.  Don't know if the tithing is even related. 

Suggestions:
- On the load game dialog popup, can you add a column to it for the file date and maybe sort by most recent first?  I keep forgetting what's my last saved game.
- Maybe add a cheat for turning random encounters off/on.  These encounters spread the enemy out to each corner of the combat map.  They can't see you, so you have to go to each corner and fight each group.  It just seems to drag on a bit.
- For me, by far what detracts most from the enjoyment is the high frequency of character deaths.  Its my opinion that an experienced player whose employing good tactics shouldn't die all that often.  Others may disagree and like it that way, but I don't feel like I'm 'winning' or that my guys are 'heroes' when I have to reload a couple times nearly every time I play.  First level was especially tough.  The deaths will often come in the form of a critical hit to a character.  When any old bandit or hobgoblin can hit your guy for 16 damage (and they do rather often and sometimes at long range), having one or two guys go down seems hard to avoid.  My spellcasters are only getting 5 HPs per level, so keeping them up in certain fights hasn't been easy.  All that said, I was thinking a possible improvement would be to implement a HP range for unconsciousness.  In goldbox games, 0 to -9 isn't dead, its just unconscious, so you have a chance to get your guys back with no reload.  Something like that for this game would be an improvement IMO.
Once again, nice game.  You've clearly put a lot of work into it.

Offline ProphetSword

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I've actually been wondering if there's a place to post bugs or suggestions.  I guess this thread might work, since I know he checks here once in a while.  Like you, I've been playing fairly regularly (finally got to 5th level after my restart).

* I will second the notion about the random encounters.  Sometimes, if I've saved recently, I will exit the game and reload rather than fight a random encounter.  Running my characters to the corners of the battle map is kind of annoying.  I wouldn't mind them so much if the enemies weren't in the corners.

* I have never been able to successfully rest in a dungeon.  100% of the time, I am attacked while resting, even if the dungeon level has been cleared out.  I have better luck resting outside, so my tactic is usually to leave the dungeon.

* It would be nice to alter the speed that combat happens.  There are times where things happen so fast, I'm not sure why one of my characters are dead.  Additionally, it takes some time to get used to the way monsters move, since it appears they teleport from one place to another.

* Have you considered using different characters for when an attack misses versus when it does no damage?  When I see "0" come up, I have to check to see if the character missed or if their weapon was ineffective.  You could use "X" for a miss or a parenthesis character ")" to signify a swing that didn't connect.  Getting that kind of feedback really helps to keep up with what's going on.


Despite these minor issues, I really love this game.
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Outlander78

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Thank you for playing, and taking the time to write these up.  These kinds of posts keep me motivated to continue working on the game.

I will try to fix the bugs you have found, and implement the improvements (which are great ideas) in the next update or two.  (Two because the next one is just about ready to publish, and I would rather not delay it.)
Please try my old school computer game (link) and tell me what you think.

Offline Dorateen

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Just wanted to let you know, I also picked this up last weekend. I haven't had time to get into it deeply. Started out making first two characters (Paladin and a dwarf fighter). Once I get the full party together, I will explore further.

So many options just at character generation. It's wonderful.
« Last Edit: August 08, 2016, 09:24:02 AM by Dorateen »
"The curse is time, and the tragedy that we have not enough of it."
~Charlotte, the Village Elder
Hearkenwold

Offline ProphetSword

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Some other minor suggestions (feel free to ignore them):

* Sometimes I sell things I have equipped when I don't mean to do that. Would it be possible to change the text color of the item when it has been equipped?  This would make it obvious which items have been equipped.

* Speaking of equipment, there doesn't seem to be a way to "unequip" an item, unless you equip something into the same slot.  Am I wrong about that?

* I noticed you can hit the "v" key to center on the current character whose turn it is.  My question is: why doesn't the view centering on them happen automatically on the beginning of their turn?  It does for the monsters.


Thanks.
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Outlander78

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Good idea, defect, bug, in that order

Sigh

:)

Thanks for the help improving my game.  There is a reason devs need testers and withers need editors.
Please try my old school computer game (link) and tell me what you think.

Offline ProphetSword

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Thanks for the help improving my game.  There is a reason devs need testers and withers writers need editors.

There you go.  No charge.  ;D
LANDS OF ADVENTURE: An Old-School Style CRPG

More Information Here: http://landsadventure.blogspot.com/

Offline Outlander78

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*facepalm*
Please try my old school computer game (link) and tell me what you think.

Offline Outlander78

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I re-read these and made some notes on the problems to fix and improvements to make.

Two stuck out as 'working as designed' in ways that I probably won't change:

a)  Demi-humans (dwarves, elves, halflings, gnomes) have slower advancement at high levels.  Classic by-the-book would cap them at mid-levels.  I am using a variant rule that allows them to proceed at a slower rate of advancement.  It is fair, I think, given that dwarves are the toughest class, dwarves and halflings take 1/2 damage from spells, all have fast saving throw advancement, and elves can cast FIREBALLS in PLATE MAIL.  (I love elves, just for "power-gaming" reasons.)

b)  You can adjust the speed at which combat messages scroll past to suit your reading speed.  Press F1 to see which buttons speed and slow the rate.  I suggest a slow rate; you can press the space bar to get through them faster when need be.
Please try my old school computer game (link) and tell me what you think.