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Messages - Nikita_Sadkov

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Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: March 09, 2020, 11:57:54 pm »

Never heard about it before, but it looks cool. I will check it out.

Quote from:
Omega was authored by Laurence Brothers in the late 1980s. It was the first roguelike with a large countryside and extended plot development.

Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: March 06, 2020, 12:07:11 am »
Petroglyph guys managed to recover lost data used for original Command & Conquer movies. At first they believed everything was lost, and nobody at EA knew what happened to original data and it was believed they just thrown it into a dumpster. But it was actually stored, and some detective work was required to tack it down. Guess when companies become as big as EA they lose grasp as what is happening inside. Hope EA also have stored the source material for other classic games, and it wont get damaged by fire or flood.

Offtopic / Re: XCOM Inspired Fantasy Game
« on: March 05, 2020, 06:23:13 am »
Ok. The new city generator is almost complete (although components were taken from the old generator). I've integrated with the dungeon and overland generators. So it can generate forest and cliffs around city, river inside city and sewer under the city. Remaining work is adding elevation with stairs, so some buildings would have higher ground. Then connecting it with world map, so cities will have contextual content.

Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: March 04, 2020, 09:27:43 pm »
The reason item trading was important in D2 was that many of the good and great items were only useful for a few character class builds.  Also the player's item stash was quite small compared to the number of good finds a player came across during a game.  Most of which his character couldn't use.
Well these items are meant for ingame trade with AI merchants, or used in cooperative multiplayer. Then again, even the AI merchant idea is broken, if it allows player to trigger the merchant into restocking with a new set of artifacts. Classical roguelikes usually have traders with non-restockable inventories, which player could have tried to rob. There was a Diablo II clone called Broken Land, which restocked merchants on reload, allowing player to buy rare runes to upgrade equipment. The game is so broken and quirky, it was never completed by any one until recently. Now it is played by speedrunners exploiting the glitch to max out everything at the beginning. No challenge in there.

As for point and click adventure games, I generally much preferred the earlier text adventure games like the ones from Infocom.
These had the same room graph as Diablo, just in a text form. But yeah, it is easy to implement rather complex stuff with pure text.

Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: March 04, 2020, 06:32:12 am »
Modern Blizzard apparently also lost grasp of what Diablo is. Since in Diablo III they tried to implement item trading between players. The whole item trading idea is absolutely incompatible with the roguelike genre, which builds completely around player solving problem with limited resources, given randomly on each playthrough. Taken to absurdity, roguelikes are similar to point and click adventure games, but with randomly generated item puzzles and RPG elements, where player develops character around what is available. Diablo also added real-time action element, to make it appealing to wider audience. Beside that, roguelikes have repeating tropes, like cursed items and scrolls. Original Diablo omitted that "cursed" element, despite it being very important to the genre, because it forces player to consider trade offs and taking risks, instead of just identifying each item (identify scrolls are rare and valuable by design). But I guess you cant expect Bobby Kotick to play Nethack or even original Diablo.

Offtopic / Re: XCOM Inspired Fantasy Game
« on: March 02, 2020, 03:55:55 am »
The Nox have floating cities.  Invisible floating cities.  Actually more than invisible, phase shifted maybe.  I don't know, it never is explained.  The Nox appear to be a primitive pre-agricultural society living on a pristine world.  Actually they are advanced far beyond humans and their technology if one can call it that appears to be magic.  It doesn't have to have a complicated physics system to describe how it works.  It can just be.  A bit of mystery is a good thing.
Is it related to the classic Westwood's RPG? I don't remember it having flying cities. It was mostly indoors dungeon crawler. With a bit of interactive environment, compared to Diablo 2. IIRC player was able to move and stack boxes to form stairs. Nox was also a proto MOBA game, before DoTA was invented.

Offtopic / Re: Baldur's Gate 3 is actually a turnbased tactics game
« on: March 02, 2020, 03:47:37 am »
the game itself felt completely different.
The ingame art style was a bit bright on the side, but it is far closer to Baldur's Gate, than say Gold Box games, Spelljammer, NWN or Dark Sun. It has the same camera angle, and smaller gimmicks, like Baldur's Gate style traps. For example, that grease floor trap triggered by opening sarcophagus. Considering it is made by a totally different team on a rather complex engine, that is as close to original as we can expect. On the good note, modern real time 3d finally approached the quality of 90ies pre-rendered backgrounds. And it is not really a remake, so game can look different. But I hope Larian will also publish the map editor, so fans could recreate the original Baldur's Gate or make changes like filter/palette choice.

Offtopic / Baldur's Gate 3 is actually a turnbased tactics game
« on: March 01, 2020, 09:35:36 pm »
Now that is a bit unexpected :o

I still like the Spelljammer setting with Illithid ships and stuff. Will it have the realmspace with ship combat in late game?

Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: March 01, 2020, 07:30:11 pm »
Some fans remade the 1997 Fallout in Bethesda's 3d engine. I remember playing the original Fallout and it was more like reading Pick Your Own Adventure book, with occasional hex based battles, which offered little tactical choice. I'm not a huge RPG fan or a book worm, so I found it a bit boring. Then there was Fallout Tactics, it had little dialogue, but an expanded battle system, with vehicles, like tanks, and maps becoming actually 3d. It also had cool large robot bosses at later stages, and was generally a really difficult, even given its linear nature. Like XCOM Apocalypse it offered realtime mode as an additional challenge

Then Bathesda turned it all into a Morrowind game, but with reduced amount of text. I personally found it a bit better than the original 1997 Fallout, since RPGs naturally call for 1st person experience, but fans accused it of misunderstanding the original Fallout's narrative and retrofuturism in general. More recently Bathesda tried to diversify into MMORPGs with that online Fallout game, but without much QA it resulted into a buggy mess, although still less embarrassing than Blizzard's failure. Apparently now they have patched it into a playable state, early adopters were basically free beta testers :D

Anyway, with fanbase dedication now you can have a near perfect Fallout experience :D

Offtopic / Re: XCOM Inspired Fantasy Game
« on: March 01, 2020, 06:53:44 pm »
Why stop halfway? Make it a floating city, suspended above the clouds! :)
Well that would require implementing special flying support blocks, so the whole construction wont collapse. A can of worms will get opened, requiring implementing all relevant subsystems and answering game design questions. For example, can these levitating blocks be destroyed? Do they need some energy source? What would it require to damage them? Should destroying them be an important gameplay element, so random maps have to be generated taking their tactical significance into account? I.e. collapsing a flying ship with opponent's creatures or landing it on top of opponent's creatures?

Given that, I will leave that feature out for now.

Anyway, reading the recent news
> Three die in dry-ice incident at Moscow pool party

It makes me think about some toy chemistry system for magical effects. I already have suffocation due to low oxygen levels, but fullblown gas physics even in a toy form would require complete 3d gas diffusion and gas weight system, with several gas types. For now I've only oxygen and it is bound to the ground tiles (i.e. there is no oxygen diffusion at higher altitudes). So I will likely leave that for later revisions of the engine, after I finalize the programming language itself.

But the gas feature itself is a very powerful game design tool for tactics games. For example, your squad can a have dog on the team, and that dog can smell nearby enemies, revealing their locations. Obviously that needs several gas types, so each object type could have some unique smell. Although CO2 should be enough in the most basic case, since that alone would allow for living creatures tracking. Undeads and inorganic creatures obviously don't breathe. I remember there was an old DOS game, called Wolf, where wolf had to sniff for hunters, bears, prey and other wolves. But it had no diffusion, just direction.

Offtopic / Re: XCOM Inspired Fantasy Game
« on: February 29, 2020, 05:50:34 am »
A glitch in city generator actually made me think of a suspended city. Where instead of these soil ramps, pavement will be resting on say columns, with other parts of the city underneath. Shouldn't be that hard to implement. Obviously it would need some railings to look nice.

Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: February 29, 2020, 04:07:50 am »
At least Nightdive Studios put System Shock Remake back on rails. They actually scrapped their early work, because it was not up to the standards. That enraged fans and backers. But they apparently found better a funding and now it looks much better than their original prototype.

Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: February 29, 2020, 03:59:15 am »
The corporations are fully responsible for bribing lobbying the politicians for those overblown copyright laws.  See below for plagiarized fair use excerpt from

"So, how, you might wonder, have companies like The Walt Disney Company managed to maintain copyrights on certain creations for almost 100 years? In the case of the Walt Disney Company, the answer is simple. It is powerful enough that it actually changed United States copyright law before its rights were going to expire."
Blizzard did the equivalent of Disney taking a single surviving reel tape of early Mickey Mouse cartoon and throwing it into garbage. Then taking say Star Wars an re-voicing all characters, replacing Wookiee and Ewoks with 3d models, and releasing it on a badly mastered blu-ray, which crashes after 10 minutes of playback. In addition adding a license clause that viewers submit right to all fanart and fan fiction. And when customers complained, accusing them of setting expectations too high. That is what Blizzard basically did.

Offtopic / Re: What happened to Blizzard?
« on: February 27, 2020, 07:30:54 pm »
In the meantime fans used advances in AI interpolation to produce actually good remaster of the classic Blizzard's game:

Guess the future is here! AI has finally surpassed human abilities :D

Activision-Blizzard themselves said they can't remaster Diablo II, because they have thrown the assets (including the source code) into garbage. What surprised me is that they openly admitted that, without understanding that it would be very insulting to fans. It is like taking an art piece in museum and tarnishing it on camera, and then asking "what is wrong with that?" No doubt a PR stunt, but not the one bringing you much love and respect.

Offtopic / Re: XCOM Inspired Fantasy Game
« on: February 26, 2020, 03:40:59 am »
The idea with roads burrowing through hills was really retarded, albeit a way to reduce tileset needs. Now instead I implemented roads going over hills, which required drawing incline cobblestone tiles and doing some tricky road interpolation code. Anyway, hills should be reserved for placing caves/mounds inside them, with some neutral monster and a treasure. I think these could be optional: if player decides to explore full map, instead of going straight to the goal, could be reward with some minor stuff. Otherwise players units should be placed right near the dungeon entrance (castle entrance, city tavern, etc...), because wandering through empty map is not that fun. Although I though about making that a challenge in itself - i.e. player should have some engineering units to build a bridge. But that obviously makes gameplay less focused and turns game into a turnbased Minecraft clone.

There also should be some placement mechanics, so defending side would be allowed to move its units before the battle has started. There are several way to implement that. But I though about allowing defender to pick initial center of placement and then place the units inside of it. Or at any indoor place. Afterwards attacker places his/her units, being limited only to outdoor areas, outside of defender's placement circle.

Unfortunately that means visitor would see whole map from the beginning. So I think still limiting visitor placement only to the camp area, and maybe to map borders. Initial placement is actually very important, especially if I later implement multiplayer maps.

Now there is also a retreat mechanic, where defender can retreat at any time, losing any unit which is indoor or in enemy sight. So for maps where defender got attacked in the open field (i.e. no castle or dungeon on that hex), that defender must get immediately surrounded and prevented from retreating without heavy loses. I still think about giving defender there the first turn, he/she will have any chance of breaking out.

As usual, game design is hard, because there are many possibilities and it is not immediately obvious which one is the best. I sometimes fail to see one of the better possibilities, noticing it after some time, and then backtracking to it.

Here is the same seed map, but with road generated going over hill, instead of digging though it. Guess in some cases this approach could make use of suspended bridges.

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