Thursday, 2 July 2009

Unangband competition post-mortem

I'd like to start a thread here, and on the forums, for analysis of what worked and what didn't work in the Unangband competition. I'll start with the feedback from drchung, and let anyone else contribute their ideas. Feel free to use this as a wide ranging platform for game design discussion and how playing Angband and variants 'should' feel:

Post-mortem: This has been a really really fun variant. For me, the big draw was the quest-like zones. There was such a strong flavor from the lord of the rings arc that it really made it interesting to push from zone to zone.

It is really hard to judge the difficulty of the game. On the one hand, the player gets so many advantages, from an inherent speed boost from agility, truly immense hp, bags to hold all the buffs and potions that you can want, and runes to get the egos that you want eventually.

And yet, this warrior didn't dominate the late levels like I am used to in other variants. I think the AC damage reductions that the monsters get is a huge part of this-- I feel in most bands, warriors thrive when they can whack monsters really fast. That just doesn't really seem to happen in U. Even with the 5d9+45 firebrand axe, killing wyrms was a hard slog and things like minotaur lords, ents, the tougher golems, and many of the bigger undead were just not worth fighting.

In some ways, the warrior played a lot like priests in other variants, focused on fighting a war of attrition. That made the tight packed mobs in especially the tower boards quite difficult to face. That combined with much less consistent escape (I found the ?o<>creation to be the best method) can make things tricky.

Still, I feel it was tough but fair, and I think an experienced player of this variant can turn it to a not-so-hard experience. It is just different from the normal 'band experience-- diving is not the answer, and you have to get used to fighting uniques sooner than you expect in V. Still, you get those juicy hp, natural speed boost, and all the potions you can drink.
I'll post my own feedback on the thread, but feel free to drop in some comments here as well or instead.

1 comment:

VRBones said...

Really glad I got to dig further into this variant. Here's my post-mortem