Author Topic: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter  (Read 1685 times)

Offline Mánagarmr

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Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« on: November 15, 2016, 01:49:07 PM »
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Online Draco18s

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #1 on: November 15, 2016, 01:53:25 PM »
As much as I enjoyed Doom: The Roguelike, one of the things that makes RL work is that they're basically graphicless.
I've found that similarly ruled games with full graphics just don't jive nearly as well.  You'd think that better graphics wouldn't matter to a turn based game, but I really did not enjoy the combat of Shadowrun Returns or Dungeons of Dreadmore.

Also, the flickering-lighting nature of that first gif makes it really freaking difficult to tell what's going on. Ugh.

I'm sure people will be all over that and most of them will probably enjoy it, but I know I won't.

Online TheVampire100

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #2 on: November 15, 2016, 03:08:33 PM »
The game has a ASCII mode though. Just saying.

Offline Mánagarmr

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #3 on: November 15, 2016, 03:16:50 PM »
As much as I enjoyed Doom: The Roguelike, one of the things that makes RL work is that they're basically graphicless.
I've found that similarly ruled games with full graphics just don't jive nearly as well.  You'd think that better graphics wouldn't matter to a turn based game, but I really did not enjoy the combat of Shadowrun Returns or Dungeons of Dreadmore.

Also, the flickering-lighting nature of that first gif makes it really freaking difficult to tell what's going on. Ugh.

I'm sure people will be all over that and most of them will probably enjoy it, but I know I won't.
You'll be glad to know that the game has an ASCII mode then.
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Online Draco18s

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #4 on: November 15, 2016, 04:09:48 PM »
Ah.
Well.
Hm.

Offline Misery

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #5 on: November 15, 2016, 10:28:34 PM »
This one had me at "DoomRL"  and "still has ASCII".   Not that the full graphics mode looks bad, but I've always liked the ASCII look and have been used to it for decades.  Also it has the advantage of being able to fit LOTS of stuff onto the screen at once. 

Really, DoomRL was a *fantastic* game.  I'm bloody terrible at it, but still, fantastic.  And none of that "every item is unidentified" crap that I loathe so very, very much.

The one thing I don't like is that the estimated date, even just for the early access version, is a freaking year away.  I'm not too fond of kickstarters for this reason, since the dates being super far off is pretty common.



You'd think that better graphics wouldn't matter to a turn based game, but I really did not enjoy the combat of Dungeons of Dreadmore.

I'm pretty sure this is blasphemy of some sort.

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #6 on: November 15, 2016, 11:19:53 PM »
You'd think that better graphics wouldn't matter to a turn based game, but I really did not enjoy the combat of Dungeons of Dreadmore.

I'm pretty sure this is blasphemy of some sort.

And to be fair, it wasn't the only thing that bugged me about Dungeons of Dreadmore.  The occasional "lol, have a room packed full of out of depth monsters" pretty much did me in.  I mean hell, the same size room, packed with one level above (weaker) monsters is probably enough to kill most players.  But having it be 10 or 20 levels deeper and you only need *one* monster to murder the player.  A full room of them is "surprise, game over!" because there's literally nothing you can do to avoid it.

Open door.
Shit pants.
Restart.

Offline Misery

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #7 on: November 16, 2016, 01:21:36 AM »
Actually I never found those rooms all that threatening, to be honest.  It's one of those things where it's about practice and getting to know the game enough.

Some players have the idea that those rooms are to be completely avoided (like, hope you never run into one), but.... no, they're basically the "boss fights" of each floor (Dredmor himself is the only single-monster boss).  You cant defeat these rooms by simply swatting at everything, you'll just end up as a smear on the wall.  It's all about items and abilities.  I've seen monster closets that are bigger than normal and have some 180 monsters in them, and still taken them out without all that much damage done.  Positioning and usage of things that aren't basic attacks, that's the key.  Not to mention understanding the enemies and keeping track of key targets in the horde.  And knowing when to back up and where to back up to.

I think they went with this idea because A: it's impressive, and B: single-monster bosses in games of this type are often very exploitable, and usually not really all that challenging in the end.  Indeed, Dredmor himself isn't all that tough, particularly since you'll probably have some crazy things to throw at him once you get there.

It's the style of the game, really.  They wanted to go far away from the traditional roguelike model (where single enemies can eat your face and are to ALWAYS be faced one-on-one, among other things they avoided) so the player is expected to be able to handle a bunch of foes at once.  The game also focuses on very heavy amounts of item usage as a whole (including many types of AoE and status effects), as well as the surrounding terrain (monster closets are huge, COMPLETELY OPEN rooms for a reason; more "normal" encounters become dangerous often specifically because of what normal rooms are like).  Not to mention that the enemies aren't always the brightest bulbs.  Simply because there's 80 of them nearby doesn't mean that there's 80 monsters that are actually bothering to pay attention to you.

I ended up loving the combat of the game because of the very high amount of strategy and tactics it involves, but there were plenty of players that indeed bounced off of the game after encountering the Monster Closets.  Traditional roguelikes just don't teach you how to deal with that sort of thing.

It's kinda odd, for a game that seems as "open" to new players as that one, it has a pretty high learning curve if you actually want to get somewhere.  Particularly when you start dealing with the game's stranger mechanics.  ....or if you try to steal from a shop.  Bad idea.  But then, it's a roguelike... that's usually a bad idea.

Offline Mánagarmr

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #8 on: November 16, 2016, 02:55:11 AM »
This one had me at "DoomRL"  and "still has ASCII".   Not that the full graphics mode looks bad, but I've always liked the ASCII look and have been used to it for decades.  Also it has the advantage of being able to fit LOTS of stuff onto the screen at once. 

Really, DoomRL was a *fantastic* game.  I'm bloody terrible at it, but still, fantastic.  And none of that "every item is unidentified" crap that I loathe so very, very much.

The one thing I don't like is that the estimated date, even just for the early access version, is a freaking year away.  I'm not too fond of kickstarters for this reason, since the dates being super far off is pretty common.
Well, you don't necessarily have to back it. ^_^ I'm probably not going to, even though I love DoomRL to bits and I know Kornel will make an amazing game in Jupiter Hell. But I'm just broke AF at the moment. I had an engine fire in one car, a vandalization and shot suspension in the other. That's like $2000 that I didn't expect and it's going to take months to recover. But, in case someone else wants to, I'm not gonna be the one to stand back and not tell people about it ^_^
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Offline Misery

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #9 on: November 16, 2016, 03:19:49 AM »
.....ouch.   Clearly you have been afflicted with some sort of car-related curse, that's the only explanation I can think of.

I've had my own share of issues with the blasted things (such as the front of the car being torn off, that was not fun, drove the damn thing to a mechanic with the front part sitting in the back seat, this looked just as stupid as it sounds).  But never a whole pile at the same freaking time.  And certainly nothing on fire.

Online Draco18s

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #10 on: November 16, 2016, 12:06:21 PM »
Some players have the idea that those rooms are to be completely avoided (like, hope you never run into one), but.... no, they're basically the "boss fights" of each floor (Dredmor himself is the only single-monster boss).  You cant defeat these rooms by simply swatting at everything, you'll just end up as a smear on the wall.  It's all about items and abilities.  I've seen monster closets that are bigger than normal and have some 180 monsters in them, and still taken them out without all that much damage done.  Positioning and usage of things that aren't basic attacks, that's the key.  Not to mention understanding the enemies and keeping track of key targets in the horde.  And knowing when to back up and where to back up to.

Seeing as I've found one on level 3 or 4 still using most of my starting equipment (because every single drop was garbage)...

No, that's not what they are.  They're a giant middle finger.

Boss fights are supposed to be predictable, so you can prepare for them.  These pop out at you and go "SURPRISE."  Seriously, look at every other roguelite and roguelike that have bosses:
Rogue Legacy: boss rooms are clearly marked
Pixel Dungeon: the only thing on the boss floors (levels 5, 10, 15, 20...) is the boss.
Haven't played others recently

(ToME, ADOM, *Angband, etc. don't have boss levels. They have the occasional out-of-depth monster, but we're talking one at a time and they usually are only one or two levels out of depth and if you were playing properly, you were generally hanging back a level compared to what you could do just to make sure you were properly slaughtering things before you ticked things up a notch; you can't do that in Dreadmore because once all the monsters are dead they're all dead).

Offline Misery

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #11 on: November 17, 2016, 02:14:27 AM »
If they really were just a big middle finger, though, they couldn't be defeated reliably (which they can be).  They just aren't all that big of a deal. I've played this game so much yet have never considered "luck" to be an issue with it (which I do consider to be an issue with more traditional "core" roguelikes, which I usually refuse to go anywhere near).   You just don't need wonderful equipment to deal with these.   .....though at the same time, if you're on floor 3 or 4 and are STILL using nothing but your starting equipment, you *must* be missing stuff.  Like, a lot of stuff.  The game drowns you in items, really... they're all over the place, including equipment of all types... and that's just stuff you find lying around.  There's also shops (there are THREE of these on each floor) which sell a lot of equipment, there's quests (equipment is the only things these give you, and it's all "enchanted" types), or even something like the Lutefisk God statue.  Not to mention crafting:  If you find that you like to focus on crossbows for instance, the Tinkering type crafting can give you a pile of options for simply building good ones yourself, among other things.   And with the way the game's stats work, even something that seems to only increase a stat by a whole 2 is still typically worth equipping; particularly if it's improving one of the 6 "primary" stats.  And there's Krong and now the funky "encrusting" system to simply improve already created equipment (usually without much difficulty; sometimes all you need to do to improve your armor is strap a bunch of meat to it.  Makes perfect sense).

The equipment on your character though isn't the most important bit; in traditional roguelikes, this would be the case.  Approched properly, these rooms don't require that you have really good equipment, or even "okay" equipoment.  You're not meant to engage these monsters directly by hitting them with sticks or whatever as much as it might seem (though I still do it anyway)... the game is handing you all these giant piles of AoE weapons and crazy things for a reason.  Same with the many skills (both long or close range) and such you have.  Things like acid flasks, high-end crossbow bolts, or even things like those funky puffballs or bolas are the sorts of things that are used to defeat these, alongside your skills, whatever those are at the time.  Most turn-based roguelikes have exceedingly simple combat with very few, if any, options beyond just smacking into the enemy.  This game expects you to do... basically everything else. Carefully considered usage of skills and items of all sorts, often in quirky ways.  Which is part of the problem perhaps, traditional roguelike tactics/techniques simply don't work here.  Try them too much, and you just end up getting congratulated for dying horribly.

Quote
you can't do that in Dreadmore because once all the monsters are dead they're all dead

Actually this isn't true.  Monsters spawn slowly as you continue to go through a floor; this is why sometimes they'll approach from odd angles in areas you thought you already cleared.  This includes elite monsters (which can be a problem if they are spellcasters).  There isn't really any point in grinding though; not necessary in this game (or I wouldn't be playing it, I *hate* grinding).
« Last Edit: November 17, 2016, 02:18:51 AM by Misery »

Online Draco18s

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #12 on: November 17, 2016, 12:41:14 PM »
Actually this isn't true.  Monsters spawn slowly as you continue to go through a floor; this is why sometimes they'll approach from odd angles in areas you thought you already cleared.  This includes elite monsters (which can be a problem if they are spellcasters).  There isn't really any point in grinding though; not necessary in this game (or I wouldn't be playing it, I *hate* grinding).

Lets put it this way:
I've had better experiences, better luck, and more success playing Pixel Dungeons than Dungeons of Dreadmore.
I got to level 15 last night on the Huntress (an unlockable class you get access to after beating level 15 for the first time).  My goal last night was to beat level 10.  I've been working on this for a few weeks (one run a night, roughly, unless it was short because you can encounter just plain bad luck--"Its safe, I have 2 hp left, and four potions, one of these is probably a healing potion." *Drink* "And now I'm on fire.  One action, then I die." *drink* "Ah, that was the paralyzation potion, I'm dead.")

I made one change to my strategy last night.  Mostly on accident, as there was no way I was going to know ahead of time how unlucky I'd be with scrolls. If I'd done my usual I probably would have died around floor 4 or 6 (either have just beaten the boss and creamed by the first thing I saw, or not survived to see it).

Items take damage as you use them (that makes sense) but I'd noticed the other day that my starting items only take damage if they've been upgraded (the "+1" enchantment).  So rather than upgrading my boomerang, I upgraded some leather armor I found (which also dropped its strength requirement by 1, which meant it wasn't overburdening me, I had yet to find a strength potion).  Helped a ghost, took its weapon (I already had leather armor and anything else would have been too heavy, but my usual tactic is to take the armor, as its always identified and never cursed).  Got a 14 strength magic sword (stunning enchantment).  Wasn't going to be using that for a while, I was up to a mere 11 strength so far and I had seen only one Upgrade scroll.  Eventually found a second and made the choice to ID and upgrade some chain mail (13 str -> 12) instead of repair/upgradinging the leather armor.  My DR only went up by 1, but the scalar was better (each +1 on leather  is 2 points of DR, but chain mail gains 3).

A short while later, I was defeating the level 10 boss, getting the advanced class manual (which in all future runs I will now start with), and heading down to the teens.  Not too long after that I reached level 15 and went to bed (the boss there is really tough).

The only change I made to my runs was to not upgrade the boomerang.  The huntress is very good with projectile weapons, so I'd been upgrading that first, getting the extra damage on 90% of my attacks early.  That run, I upgraded armor and only armor, and found a decent weapon to swap out with the dagger I started with (doesn't usually happen, oddly enough, due to the strength requirements and the relatively few strength potions--e.g. I've found 6 in 15 levels (giving me a strength of 16) and the best armor and weapons in the game take 18 strength, which I've found on level 1 before).  I think I found a total of 3 scrolls of upgrade, which is awful.  I normally have that many by floor 5, if not, I can pick one up at the shop on floor 6.  No, this run gave me lots of scrolls of remove curse (which you need like one or two of, tops, because cursed items are still negatively enchanted--its easier to just not equip unidentified items).

It probably helped that I murdered two shopkeepers (there's only one way to do that, and it's by finding a shine room, killing five monsters while you--or they--are standing on the altar, at which point the room turns off and you get a Scroll of Wipe Out, which kills everything currently on the floor.  If you're standing on the altar when you kill monster #5, the buff you get for standing there will last another 5 turns or so. If you kill another monster in this time, you get another scroll of wipe out; I've never gotten more than two, and I got two last night) and totally stole all their stuff.  Which was mostly "I'm not paying for your overpriced rations and I'm starving" but I also got a handful of other useful things.  But I don't attribute this to the difference between a successful run and an unsuccessful run, I had a run about two weeks ago where I died holding two scrolls of wipe out because I never got to use them (i.e. never reached level 6).  I attribute killing the shopkeepers as allowing me to survive to level 15, rather than just level 10, as I've never gotten this far and not killed at least one of them.

To give you an idea of how powerful what you decide to upgrade is, I started favoring the mage heavily because once I got the class mastery book, one of the options is Battlemage, which:
 - lets you equip wands as melee and do boatloads of damage (3 + N where N is how many charges it has, minimum 2)
 - hitting a monster with a wand and doing at least 3 damage (after armor) recharges it one charge
You also start with a wand of magic missile for being a mage (a great short and long range weapon; wand of lightning is better at both damage and has AOE, but you can hit yourself with it too).

The first ability is basically "you don't need a melee weapon, you can stop using scrolls of upgrade on melee weapons" reducing your scroll requirement by a third (melee + ranged + armor -> wand + armor).  The free recharging is just candy.  Use a charge (wand effects always hit), melee the monster, use a charge, melee the monster.

The mage is the only class I've been to level 15 with before (three times, even).  I figured the huntress's boomerang would function similarly to the wand of magic missile: giving me good long-range damage that I could also use in melee.  In practice I was wrong.  It's accuracy is lower than a dagger, so once a monster is in melee range, I'm better off stabbing it than using the boomerang, even if the boomerang is upgraded twice and the dagger isn't.  This is particularly noticeable against monsters that start showing up on level 3 and becomes a big issue once you reach level 6.

I've never had runs like that in Dreadmore, where altering my strategy just the tiniest bit has made such a huge difference.  No, in Dreadmore I'm constantly scrabbling for any item better than I started with and never getting it.  I've even tried a class that can craft weapons or armor and that only means that I'm scrabbling for the crafting resources too.  I still never find better stuff, the crafting helps a little, but I still end up just shy of an upgrade more often than completing it.  And then I die.

Offline madcow

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #13 on: November 17, 2016, 02:51:20 PM »
I don't recall the monster zoo in dredmore being a higher level than you. I seem to recall it was the same floor monsters, there were higher level bosses from evil chests and quests though.  Also the blue portal dungeons, screw those I always skipped them.  Dredmore was definitely a gem of a game that I loved. Although at times I found the crafting and inventory management a real pain.

Offline Misery

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Re: Jupiter Hell: Now on Kickstarter
« Reply #14 on: November 17, 2016, 09:21:33 PM »
Actually this isn't true.  Monsters spawn slowly as you continue to go through a floor; this is why sometimes they'll approach from odd angles in areas you thought you already cleared.  This includes elite monsters (which can be a problem if they are spellcasters).  There isn't really any point in grinding though; not necessary in this game (or I wouldn't be playing it, I *hate* grinding).

Lets put it this way:
I've had better experiences, better luck, and more success playing Pixel Dungeons than Dungeons of Dreadmore.
I got to level 15 last night on the Huntress (an unlockable class you get access to after beating level 15 for the first time).  My goal last night was to beat level 10.  I've been working on this for a few weeks (one run a night, roughly, unless it was short because you can encounter just plain bad luck--"Its safe, I have 2 hp left, and four potions, one of these is probably a healing potion." *Drink* "And now I'm on fire.  One action, then I die." *drink* "Ah, that was the paralyzation potion, I'm dead.")

I made one change to my strategy last night.  Mostly on accident, as there was no way I was going to know ahead of time how unlucky I'd be with scrolls. If I'd done my usual I probably would have died around floor 4 or 6 (either have just beaten the boss and creamed by the first thing I saw, or not survived to see it).

Items take damage as you use them (that makes sense) but I'd noticed the other day that my starting items only take damage if they've been upgraded (the "+1" enchantment).  So rather than upgrading my boomerang, I upgraded some leather armor I found (which also dropped its strength requirement by 1, which meant it wasn't overburdening me, I had yet to find a strength potion).  Helped a ghost, took its weapon (I already had leather armor and anything else would have been too heavy, but my usual tactic is to take the armor, as its always identified and never cursed).  Got a 14 strength magic sword (stunning enchantment).  Wasn't going to be using that for a while, I was up to a mere 11 strength so far and I had seen only one Upgrade scroll.  Eventually found a second and made the choice to ID and upgrade some chain mail (13 str -> 12) instead of repair/upgradinging the leather armor.  My DR only went up by 1, but the scalar was better (each +1 on leather  is 2 points of DR, but chain mail gains 3).

A short while later, I was defeating the level 10 boss, getting the advanced class manual (which in all future runs I will now start with), and heading down to the teens.  Not too long after that I reached level 15 and went to bed (the boss there is really tough).

The only change I made to my runs was to not upgrade the boomerang.  The huntress is very good with projectile weapons, so I'd been upgrading that first, getting the extra damage on 90% of my attacks early.  That run, I upgraded armor and only armor, and found a decent weapon to swap out with the dagger I started with (doesn't usually happen, oddly enough, due to the strength requirements and the relatively few strength potions--e.g. I've found 6 in 15 levels (giving me a strength of 16) and the best armor and weapons in the game take 18 strength, which I've found on level 1 before).  I think I found a total of 3 scrolls of upgrade, which is awful.  I normally have that many by floor 5, if not, I can pick one up at the shop on floor 6.  No, this run gave me lots of scrolls of remove curse (which you need like one or two of, tops, because cursed items are still negatively enchanted--its easier to just not equip unidentified items).

It probably helped that I murdered two shopkeepers (there's only one way to do that, and it's by finding a shine room, killing five monsters while you--or they--are standing on the altar, at which point the room turns off and you get a Scroll of Wipe Out, which kills everything currently on the floor.  If you're standing on the altar when you kill monster #5, the buff you get for standing there will last another 5 turns or so. If you kill another monster in this time, you get another scroll of wipe out; I've never gotten more than two, and I got two last night) and totally stole all their stuff.  Which was mostly "I'm not paying for your overpriced rations and I'm starving" but I also got a handful of other useful things.  But I don't attribute this to the difference between a successful run and an unsuccessful run, I had a run about two weeks ago where I died holding two scrolls of wipe out because I never got to use them (i.e. never reached level 6).  I attribute killing the shopkeepers as allowing me to survive to level 15, rather than just level 10, as I've never gotten this far and not killed at least one of them.

To give you an idea of how powerful what you decide to upgrade is, I started favoring the mage heavily because once I got the class mastery book, one of the options is Battlemage, which:
 - lets you equip wands as melee and do boatloads of damage (3 + N where N is how many charges it has, minimum 2)
 - hitting a monster with a wand and doing at least 3 damage (after armor) recharges it one charge
You also start with a wand of magic missile for being a mage (a great short and long range weapon; wand of lightning is better at both damage and has AOE, but you can hit yourself with it too).

The first ability is basically "you don't need a melee weapon, you can stop using scrolls of upgrade on melee weapons" reducing your scroll requirement by a third (melee + ranged + armor -> wand + armor).  The free recharging is just candy.  Use a charge (wand effects always hit), melee the monster, use a charge, melee the monster.

The mage is the only class I've been to level 15 with before (three times, even).  I figured the huntress's boomerang would function similarly to the wand of magic missile: giving me good long-range damage that I could also use in melee.  In practice I was wrong.  It's accuracy is lower than a dagger, so once a monster is in melee range, I'm better off stabbing it than using the boomerang, even if the boomerang is upgraded twice and the dagger isn't.  This is particularly noticeable against monsters that start showing up on level 3 and becomes a big issue once you reach level 6.

I've never had runs like that in Dreadmore, where altering my strategy just the tiniest bit has made such a huge difference.  No, in Dreadmore I'm constantly scrabbling for any item better than I started with and never getting it.  I've even tried a class that can craft weapons or armor and that only means that I'm scrabbling for the crafting resources too.  I still never find better stuff, the crafting helps a little, but I still end up just shy of an upgrade more often than completing it.  And then I die.


Hmm, it sounds more like the game's overall strategy/style just doesn't agree with your own... I suspect it'd be the same if I were to try playing the game you're talking about.  I can never get *anywhere* in those "everything is unidentified because your character is a damn moron" sorts of roguelikes.  Gimme a week at it, and I'll somehow have made backwards progress.  That game you describe there would probably just eat me.  Many times.

As for Dredmor it also sounds like you're focusing too much on equipment.  You just don't need that kind of focus on it as much as you do in other games; your skill choices are more important in most cases.  Not that it isn't still important, but it isn't going to break your game if you don't just happen to find an axe or whatever that isn't as strong as it should be.


Hell, I was playing last night and got to a Monster Zoo on floor 2... a notable thing about monsters on floor 2 is that damn near all of them are either resistant or totally immune to poison damage.  I was using a dagger as a weapon, and it wasn't a very good one, and because of reasons, about 50% of the dagger's damage was poison and asphyxiation (no, I don't know how that makes sense, but they're immune to that too).  In addition, the main ranged skill I'd been using (from the Bankster set) also focuses on poison damage.   AND, all of the AoE items I had at the time were poison in nature.  I was in a very wonky position when it comes to my stats VS what would be good (or even decent) for dealing with the monsters on floor 2.   I went to that floor figuring, okay, it's a huge floor, I'll probably have some time to find some other options or at least a shop before encountering the zoo.   Nope.  Got the zoo about 1/4th of the way in.  And what made it worse is that a few of the enemies that spotted me right when I opened the door were of a type that can burrow into the ground and appear elsewhere; needless to say, they appeared behind me. AND of course there were a few elite foes buried among the pile.  So, I had a dagger that couldn't stab anything properly, AoE throwables that weren't going to be useful until floor 3 (and AoE tends to be important for dealing with Monster Zoos or small hordes), and then my inventory just crammed with random junk.   I had various crossbow bolts, but nothing like a Bolt of Squid (massive darkness-based AoE attack); they were all direct damage types, and a couple of THOSE were poison too, because apparently I wasn't poisonous enough.  Amazing that my damn hat wasn't made of poison or something.  I also had too many food items and some mushrooms and things.  I did at least have some puffballs (very useful for my particular playstyle) but only a couple of them.... usually I hope to have a few more by that point.  I also had a variety of potions.  My best equipment was my two rings, though one of those had mostly been chosen because it increased trap affinity (not easy to do)... so that one, while useful for what I wanted to do elsewhere, wasn't exactly helpful in a fight.  I had the ability to craft stuff (alchemy and tinkering) but had mostly just made a slightly-okay crossbow and a few potion regents that weren't ready for use yet.  Which was fine, I typically don't expect to really get going with the crafting THAT early on (I'd only been through one freaking floor).  So that wasn't helpful either.  I had a couple of wands, but they were quirky things, not ones that were really about dealing actual damage.

With the way the game works though, it just never gets into a position of "there's absolutely no way out, sorry, because RNG" (well, as long as you don't try to go into a blue portal or Diggle Hell too early, those WILL kill you).   It gets into positions of "This will be harder than normal... can you FIGURE OUT how to get out of it?" which is pretty much the concept the Zoos seem to be entirely built on.   I go in there with what's got to be the most unsuited equipment I've used in that type of situation in quite awhile (and being on floor 2, this meant I'm still low level, so I have very few skills unlocked), and even my AoE items weren't of any use.... normally I'd hope to have found some that do fire damage or something else, not MORE freaking poison.    I still managed to clear it though, and I don't think I ever dropped below 50% HP the whole time, even despite the burrowing jerks.  It was just about using the resources I DID have and making tactical decisions, and preferably doing so in ways that went along with the build I'd chosen thus far.   Lots of careful positioning and lots of using items and skills at the right time.  Used up like 4 potions, most of my mushrooms, and 3 freaking wands getting through that, some crossbow bolts too.   But I did get through it, and the good thing is that Zoos are worth ALOT of experience (and levelling up tends to be a big deal in that game).    However, if I'd tried more "normal" tactics like the sort that work in games like Nethack, I'd never have gotten through it, because that wouldn't have worked.

Kinda interesting, really, how far apart the game is from the more "traditional" ones.   Though, that's another topic that I'll not go into right now... frankly I could rant for like 5 pages about roguelike design concepts and such, it fascinates me.


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I don't recall the monster zoo in dredmore being a higher level than you. I seem to recall it was the same floor monsters, there were higher level bosses from evil chests and quests though.  Also the blue portal dungeons, screw those I always skipped them.  Dredmore was definitely a gem of a game that I loved. Although at times I found the crafting and inventory management a real pain.

Yeah, the zoos mostly have monsters from the same floor.  You can occaisionally get a straggler or two from one floor higher (they wont have hyper boosted stats like the evil chest ones though), but one or two of those doesn't make a difference in a blob of like 70 monsters.