Still possible to leave Orbs in permanently inaccessible places
issueid=5203 10-06-2017 05:43 PM
Senior Member
Number of reported issues by Grond: 582
Still possible to leave Orbs in permanently inaccessible places

In the pyramid and minotaur maze, you can get around the Chaos Orbs returning to your backpack by throwing them. There are also two new areas that can be made permanently inaccessible:
  1. Rolf's throne room, which becomes inaccessible if you kill dwarves.
  2. The volcano, which becomes inaccessible once rendered dormant.
Issue Details
Issue Number 5203
Project ADOM (Ancient Domains Of Mystery)
Category All without NotEye
Status Unconfirmed
Priority 8
Affected Version ADOM 2.3.3
Fixed Version (none)
Milestone (none)
Users able to reproduce bug 0
Users unable to reproduce bug 0
Assigned Users (none)
Tags (none)




10-08-2017 01:35 PM
The Creator
Sometimes I wonder if it really is a problem if you ruin your game...

10-08-2017 01:43 PM
The Creator
It just does not fit the logic of the game to pamper players... and it's annoyingly hard to implement and even harder to rationalize with these levels...

10-08-2017 01:45 PM
The Creator
The next issue about neutralizing this with throwing is that you suddenly have returning missiles on certain levels... this isn't fun either.

I'm really tempted to once more remove the pampering from the pyramid and minotaur levels and leave it as it is.

10-08-2017 02:43 PM
Senior Member
I'm fine with that. Deliberately ruining your game does take some work.

10-08-2017 04:26 PM
Qui Qui is offline
Senior Member
I'd say there's no need for the game to protect the player against every silly thing they could do.

10-08-2017 06:20 PM
Junior Member
I say let the players learn the actions of their consequences. No need to hold their hands and pamper them >:)

10-09-2017 09:29 AM
Ancient Member
I don't know. Having unannounced dead ends is widely considered bad design in games. At least the game should warn the player that they're hitting a dead end.

10-09-2017 09:31 AM
Ancient Member
just limit people throwing / dropping the orbs

10-09-2017 11:33 AM
Junior Member
While I appreciate that it’s not ‘nice’ game design to let the player run themselves into a dead end, the player here is throwing away a rather important object — and in special locations. This is like zapping a wand at a wall. It’s going to hurt, but you learn not to do it again.

I say, if a player is so keen to throw away their orb, let them. And let them deal with the consequences.

10-09-2017 11:55 AM
Junior Member
If the player doesn't know that these locations cannot be accessed again, then they'll learn it and that's that. If they do know it then there's nothing I can say in their defense really. Besides, common sense would dictate, that you should NOT throw important (as in part of the game's main storyline) artifacts, and leave them there. If you take a hammer and smash you hard drive, you also don't get directly before the hammer actually reaches the HDD a popup in your field of vision saying "Are you sure you want to do that? It might render your data unrecoverable.", and you'll lose a lot more in that case than a single ADOM run. :)

10-10-2017 03:52 AM
rho rho is offline
Member
Personally, I very strongly dislike games where I can continue playing for hours after the game has been rendered unwinnable. I have no problem at all with "I did something foolish and I died". That's fine. It's my own fault. But, "I did something foolish hours ago, and wasn't aware of it until now" feels completely different. When that happens to me, I usually feel as if the game doesn't respect my time, which normally leads to me never picking the game up again. Even if I learn not do that one thing ever again, I always feel that if a game is willing to waste my time once, it might be willing to do it again.

Also, while I personally prefer to play ADOM with permadeath, for people playing with reloadable saves, unwinnable games can be a huge problem. Doing something that makes the game unwinnable is way wore than killing the character. A character death can just be reloaded. If you learn that something you did hours (or days, or weeks) ago rendered the game unwinnable and you don't have a suitable save, then your character is toast. Which is almost certainly not something that's desirable for anyone playing without permadeath.

I also don't think that it's all that difficult to do this sort of thing by accident. For instance, it's not uncommon for situations to arise where you want to pick something up but need to drop something else at the same time because of encumbrance. It's also generally not intuitive that certain areas can close off and become inaccessible in the future. "I'm carrying too much weight and I'm not using this orb now, so I'll just drop it and come back for it later" is a reasonable thing to think. As is "this thing is killing me so I have to experiment with things in my inventory to see if anything can save me. I wonder if throwing the chaos orbs does anything?" They aren't the sort of thing that would happen all that often, but they also aren't so rare that you could only ruin your game if you were doing it on purpose.

All of which isn't necessarily to say that this should be fixed. Diminishing returns and opportunity costs are things that exist, and any time and effort put into this is time and effort that aren't spent elsewhere. But I do think that it is a genuine problem and something that would ideally be addressed.

(Aside: one possible solution for the thrown chaos orbs problem would be to make them into actually good but corrupting missiles. Throw an orb, and it triggers a ball spell where it hits, automatically returns to hand, and gives you a corruption.)

10-10-2017 05:08 AM
Ancient Member
Quote Originally Posted by rho
Personally, I very strongly dislike games where I can continue playing for hours after the game has been rendered unwinnable. I have no problem at all with "I did something foolish and I died". That's fine. It's my own fault. But, "I did something foolish hours ago, and wasn't aware of it until now" feels completely different.
Agreed, I suggest just killing player if orb becomes unacessable. Like "experiencing rage of Ancardia due to loosing important stuff" or something like that.

10-10-2017 09:02 AM
Ancient Member
rho's explanation explains my own opinion much more clearly than I could.

And I also agree that killing the player would be a good solution.

It's not that I want the game to handhold the player, it's just that being in an unwinnable state without knowing (and maybe keeping playing for hours, or for even more time if you use savegames, as rho says) is bad design and unnecessarily frustrating as it can be avoided.

10-10-2017 02:00 PM
Qui Qui is offline
Senior Member
There are "newbie hints" now in the game, so maybe when you first pick up an Orb, display one saying "this thing is important, don't lose it"? One would expect this to be self-explanatory if someone's paying attention, but I still remember fighting SfB for the very first time and I thought it's just a snake who stepped into a corruption trap, so...

10-10-2017 03:11 PM
Junior Member
Hmmm you know what I think that's fair. I guess it would definitly suck if you couldn't finish the main quest.

10-10-2017 08:23 PM
Junior Member
I find that I agree with some/most of what's said here. Not that it's necessarily worth investing much time in the issue, but while we're talking about this, some popup saying "You recall the [last words of the dying sage | guidance of Khelavaster | whatever, depending on previous events relating to Khelavaster] and think you're supposed to safeguard this orb with your very life." or "You pick up the orb and get the feeling you're supposed hold on to it for dear life." or something similar could be a solution. (Maybe phrase it in a way that doesn't make the player think they have to actually carry all the orbs around with them, but rather emphasizes that they should keep them safe.) This could occur either the first time the player picks up any orb/the first time they pick up each of the orbs.

Another optional (and possibly additional to the previous one) compromise is to alert the player in a similar popup when they drop it for the first time anywhere or drop it for the first time in a specific, eventually potentially inaccessible location like: "You sense a feeling of loss as the orb's touch fades away from your skin. You should probably return to it later." and "As the orb leaves your hand, you get a bad feeling about this place. Maybe this wasn't such a good idea?"

These should be displayed not in every game, and not multiple times, but only when a player first performs one of these actions: 1. pick up a chaos orb; 2. drop/throw a chaos orb in a safe (as in not potentially inaccessible) place; 3. drop/throw a chaos orb in a place that can become inaccessible, e.g. pyramid, minotaur maze, Rolf's level etc. (for each of these levels display the message a single time for the player).

Whether these messages have already been displayed could be stored in some config file along with other global statistics (death count etc.), and therefore the messages would not pester experienced players, but really just provide "newbie hints". This would also be better in my opinion than flat out disallowing mainquest-failing actions. If a player really wishes to lose the orbs, let them. Granted, this would probably not be a popular course of action, but would be better from an immersion standpoint. (Again, I'm not saying valuable development time should be spent on implementing this at this very moment, there are still lots of actual bugs popping up, and this is probably going to be the case to a lesser degree for a while, after the larger public gets its hands on the new release.)

10-11-2017 02:11 PM
Junior Member
Maybe make it so that, if you've left orbs at a place that has since become inaccessible, after a certain number of turns has passed a solar / holy slayer / greater demon (depending on your alignment) appears to bring you the orbs. There's a message that goes 'the *foo* scolds you: "mortal, you left these laying around, and retrieving them was not a trivial task... YOU REALLY SHOULD HOLD ON TO THEM!" the *foo* suddenly is gone!'.
This would solve the problem, while also teaching the player about the orbs' importance. It could also result in a penalty, like some piety loss.

10-11-2017 05:11 PM
Junior Member
Quote Originally Posted by sillihai
Maybe make it so that, if you've left orbs at a place that has since become inaccessible, after a certain number of turns has passed a solar / holy slayer / greater demon (depending on your alignment) appears to bring you the orbs. There's a message that goes 'the *foo* scolds you: "mortal, you left these laying around, and retrieving them was not a trivial task... YOU REALLY SHOULD HOLD ON TO THEM!" the *foo* suddenly is gone!'.
This would solve the problem, while also teaching the player about the orbs' importance. It could also result in a penalty, like some piety loss.
Hm possibly, this seems like a good idea too, still it would probably be best implemented as something that occurs only a limited few number of times.

10-11-2017 05:16 PM
Ancient Member
The problem isn't only newbie players who don't know better. It can be, for example, dropping everything at an altar and not remembering to pick up the orb, or other similar oversights. So I don't think "noob-only" solutions are optimal here.

10-11-2017 08:44 PM
Junior Member
Quote Originally Posted by Al-Khwarizmi
The problem isn't only newbie players who don't know better. It can be, for example, dropping everything at an altar and not remembering to pick up the orb, or other similar oversights. So I don't think "noob-only" solutions are optimal here.
You can ruin your game in a myriad of ways by "forgetting to do something" or "accidentally doing something" and so on. If you forget you didn't pick up the crumpled scroll, and when you return for it an acid vortex destroys it, you'll lose your chance at an ultra ending, possibly even more frustratingly. Or if you lose it in a trap. Or polymorph it by mistake. There are lots of foolish things one can do.

The reason this is different is because a new player might not even have much reason to suspect that what they're doing is a bad idea, hence the suggestions of hinting at that fact in more or less subtle ways. But if a player knows full well that leaving the orb makes "winning" impossible, then they bear full responsibility. Yes, they might do it by mistake but they can also die by mistake in many ways, or do many other stupid things, as I've already said. They are still responsible for paying attention to these things.

Furthermore, even if the orbs are lost, they can leave the Drakalor Chain and end the game that way. Yes, they will have failed the main quest, but they still will have done lots of other stuff, and still get a scoreboard entry. That's why I don't think handholding veteran players is necessary, but helping newbies a little would be okay.

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