Thursday, 23 July 2015

Evolution of diggers

In still unfinished Teemu 1.3 I was experimenting with so called 'diggers' which are corridor creating "robots" that can create clones of themselves which simply are the branching corridors of a labyrinth. I realized that diggers can be evolved to do much more than just labyrinths if you create a set of rules for them.

Currently I need diggers to create corridor systems for a 'catacomb' theme. They can be as simple as a straight corridor with branching corridors to both sides of the main corridor. This can be expressed in rules of having zero curvature, more than one branching rate and 100 percent double clone probability.

If you want regular labyrinths it's simple to give more curvature for both original digger and clones. The amount of curvature and changes in other data can be used to create different kind of labyrinth styles and I like the idea of just having extra corridor systems with more or less curvature. Those can be created to otherwise unoccupied areas of the level after the main structure creation has been done.

While this is all exciting I've had trouble implementing the new digger system, because there is a strange bug with searching of so called tile masks. When searching an entry point for diggers one way to do it is find mask values of tiles. So I can for example find water areas and start diggers from there. But for some reason the routine doesn't find room walls, even they do exist and I can even confirm the proper mask values are there by looking at the automap in debug mode.

So I guess I'll spend this day searching for that bug.

ps. Well, that was quick. The bug happened, because 'small rooms' were created after the level theme creation in where I was calling the digger routine, so those rooms weren't even there at the moment the digger routine was called. That also seems to be true for some other routines, because I get some debug error messages of the search routine trying to look for parts of rooms.

Saturday, 4 July 2015

Realistic gameplay and torches

The current equipment has a slot for light sources. It's kind of "third" hand to hold the torch or whatever. You still have left and right hand slots where you can equip weapons and shields.

However if you want to be realistic you should have only two hands to hold things. But is it worth it? If you need one hand for the light source you would not be able to hold a shield when fighting in poor lighted places, not to mention two-handed weapons. You could always drop the light source on ground (in Kaduria it's possible, the item will still work as a light source) before fighting, but it would be quite annoying I guess.

The way to make it less annoying would be lot of lights around the dungeon in most places. This is actually what I'm planning to do anyway and it could be a nice way to reduce the need for a personal light source. But then again, dungeon wall torches are the great role-playing example of unrealistic light sources, because they never go out. If they did, they would be always burnt out, unless there is an army of goblins replacing them all the time.

I like the idea of "more" realistic gameplay, but you have to be really careful or it will create some tedious tasks for the player who start to hate it after a while. I know I would.