Disappointed..

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Re: Disappointed..

Postby Lujo on Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:24 pm

The Avatar wrote:The problem with mid-fight level ups is how unintuitive they are. It seems to make more sense to get to as high a level as possible and then fight the boss, when the opposite is true. People know they get all their hp and mana back, but they don't realize the possibility for spiking, hence the puzzle idea. And these devs make very good puzzles. The tutorial I Ed are neither redundant nor ridiculous, but very well made.


I've spoken on the subject before, and I'm curious about a thing: What's the official stance on mid-fight dings? As in - when the game was being thought up, was their power taken into account? I can't really place them as a mechanic because of unintuitiveness, they're like an ascended glitch which became a cornerstone mechanic (if not THE cornerstone mechanic).
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby xspeedballx on Wed Jun 12, 2013 6:49 pm

Level ups are just another resource. A powerful limited resource. I imagine like every other resource it was intended. Midfight level up's make perfect sense once you do it and recognize it. However, it IS unintuitive to learn. What I wonder is there a way to make them more obvious to learn outside of a tutorial or a puzzle? Something the game itself can teach you? Is there a way?
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby Lujo on Wed Jun 12, 2013 7:22 pm

xspeedballx wrote:What I wonder is there a way to make them more obvious to learn outside of a tutorial or a puzzle? Something the game itself can teach you? Is there a way?


This is why I asked what I asked. I think the incentive to do them is glimpsing (or suspecting) power that comes with it. The ammount of power is outstanding among other resources/manouvers or sources of refill - so much so that you can't really suspect something so powerful is right there in front of you. How much of it should be made obvious?

Because if you wanted to go blunt and untactful about it, stick a ridiculous boss, a fighter, a fireball glyph and a bunch of popcorn in a small room and a signpost saying - yes you can do this. And then call this tutorial "lesson number one". It'd work, too, but I suspect this wasn't really the intended way of looking at it.
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby squirrelnest on Wed Jun 12, 2013 10:52 pm

Lujo wrote:Because if you wanted to go blunt and untactful about it, stick a ridiculous boss, a fighter, a fireball glyph and a bunch of popcorn in a small room and a signpost saying - yes you can do this. And then call this tutorial "lesson number one". It'd work, too, but I suspect this wasn't really the intended way of looking at it.


For what its worth, that's exactly how I would do it.
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby dislekcia on Wed Jun 12, 2013 11:04 pm

xspeedballx wrote:Level ups are just another resource. A powerful limited resource. I imagine like every other resource it was intended. Midfight level up's make perfect sense once you do it and recognize it. However, it IS unintuitive to learn. What I wonder is there a way to make them more obvious to learn outside of a tutorial or a puzzle? Something the game itself can teach you? Is there a way?


Yes, they're considered in terms of balance and progression.

There are a couple of ways to teach the concept that we're simply not covering right now:
1. Show health regained total vs health regenerated in the score screen. If those two numbers are different, people will notice and wonder where the "extra" health came from.
2. Make the level up animation more explicit in terms of effects. We need to make a bigger song and dance about poison and manaburn being cured by level ups, we also need to make a bigger deal about health and mana being granted too.

We're kinda working on both, but the score screen is in the most flux right now.
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby Bloggorus on Fri Jun 14, 2013 4:28 am

Flying globs of health and mana like you get on regen would go a long way.

It might also be worth just adding toasts for level ups.

There's so much that goes on at level up, especially if you include things like Patches, piety gains and losses, resetting per-level item effects like alchemist scroll, status effect heals, pacts like overheal, momentum loss...

Stats would be good too, especially for monks, rogues and priests who have modified stat gains per level up.

A simple notification in the top of the screen, for instance, that fades after a certain amount of time.

I would do a little mock up of what i mean but i'm on my phone. Maybe later.
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby TigerKnee on Sun Jun 16, 2013 12:22 pm

I've got to say, I'm glad I'm not in charge of ever having to teach people something in "subtle" ways like what was mentioned above. If I were doing it, I would just outright put a sign that goes "Hey, did you know that you can utilize level ups spikes to take down more difficult opponents with less resources consumed?", but that's just how I'm wired. I'm a really direct to the point person.

The wiki will always be needed because no matter how the game designers thinks they're being really obvious without outright telling the player what the solution is, there's always someone who will never "get" something without outright being told. So unless we want to go that route (which we don't, because the devs has already stated that the learning process is "part of the fun"), that's the way it has to be.

(Wow, I haven't posted in god knows how long.)
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby Lujo on Sun Jun 16, 2013 2:49 pm

TigerKnee wrote:I would just outright put a sign that goes "Hey, did you know that you can utilize level ups spikes to take down more difficult opponents with less resources consumed?"


There's a big problem with that. I've mentioned it several times before - once you figure out that a method used to reliably beat a vicious difficulty dungeon is applicable everywhere most of the game really does become rather easy. It can have individal and personal (but reasonable) side effects if the player has a "why didn't they tell me this earlier?" moment.

Thing is - level up spikes are bloody strong, and relatively easy to do once you got them pegged as an option. And all the components are there from the start, including most of the optimization tools (slowing glyphs, IMAWAL, Burndayraz, Fighter...) You can have a challenging/fun/difficult/engaging experience with the early/mid game if you're not aware of them, but you'll be hard pressed to find a challenge before the vicious/harder hard places if you do know about them and can utilize them.

So if you take the blunt route and spell it out for a player that a fighter with wonnafyt and burndayraz can pretty much breeze through most of the game - the natural thing the player will ask is: well, what's all the other stuff in there for anyway? Which is why I couldn't decide what to think about the mechanic.
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby Lujo on Tue Jun 18, 2013 2:52 pm

Appologize for doublepost, but I thought about the subject a bit (was always interesting to me). While the ding! spike is powerful, it also has fuel and fuel management. Simple, readily available fuel, and relatively simple management to master once you start paying attention to it. Double-boss dungeons pretty much mandate knowing the technique for dealing with at least one boss and you can't really use it to kill multiple bosses because the scaling XP cost (outside of specific strats with, say, goblins, fighters, assassins and so forth). I guess steering the newbies towards it right off the bat in some way might actually not devalue the experience challenge wise if you look at it like that.

I guess my concern was that the if the mechanic were more widely and readily recognized the feedback might turn out to be: "dings are way too good", and it's probably both too late to do anything about it, or impossible. But that's just an opinion.

I also sort of think that the fighter bronze challenge is a sort of "blunt level popcorn munching teaching tool" except it fails to teach a permanent lesson maybe because it's not really clear that the challenges are ment to teach broader lessons (old issue).
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Re: Disappointed..

Postby xspeedballx on Tue Jun 18, 2013 6:23 pm

Nobody would ever say Ding's are too good. Those words and similar meaning ones just would never be said. This is because the behavior of the level up is "standard" rpg behavior. You go up a level, you get stronger and you get your resources back. I am well aware of a number of genre's that do not employ this but those I would say are the exception. This is all just an aside though.

Learning to use level ups is necessary for mid to late game play. Learning any advance play technique in most games will make the early game easier. This is especially true in rogue likes where you increasingly want to spend as little time as possible in the early game. DD is somewhat unique in that the early game never comes back. Also an aside.

How do you teach a player about them at the right time? When is the right time? Right as they reach hard dungeons? Are hard dungeons reached too quickly? Can it be taught in an attempt or two at a hard dungeon?

What if it was an achievement? So we have cheeky.. which eludes to one key thing to learn.. fighting above your level. I am not sure we want more badges but what if when achievements get added there involves one around killing a weakened higher level enemy after leveling up(wording is terrible). Sometimes a great way to teach people something is to challenge them towards something.

Another thought though probably way out of scope is a boss who grows more powerful as you level up unless he is below 75% health could be workshopped in the right direction.
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