Outpost Universe Forums

Off Topic => General Interest => Game Discussion General => Topic started by: lordpalandus on September 09, 2017, 12:45:53 AM

Title: Cataclysm of Chaos V4
Post by: lordpalandus on September 09, 2017, 12:45:53 AM
Hello all!

As I've alluded to in my Outpost-Like game thread, I've been working on a text-based adventure (of sorts) that I intend to market commercially, probably on GOG and Steam (if possible), when I've completed it. The game is called, Cataclysm of Chaos, and supports three distinct playstyles (though the player is definitely allowed to experiment and create their own style of play if they so desire) which are pure spellcaster, pure melee, and pure assassin.

Download Link for V4, Hotfix 1, of Cataclysm of Chaos (Sep 24th, 2017) = https://www.mediafire.com/file/43lmfa7mo0o4745/CoC_V4.zip
Alternatively, can grab the V4 Release via the attachment to this post! Included in the zip file is the changelog of all the major changes/bugfixes.
You will need the Quest Engine to play it, the download for the Quest Engine is found here = http://textadventures.co.uk/quest/desktop
You can now play the game in a browser; go to this link for V4 = http://textadventures.co.uk/games/view/rvnjlvi4heq6u7-namkaxa/the-cataclysm-of-chaos

------

Changes in V5 Release (unreleased):

1. Found a logic error in my repeat combat casting code, and fixed it.
2. Added a repeat last attack option now as well!

------

Plans ahead:

1. Always Do:
- Continue to improve upon the UI and add additional quality of life changes and balance changes to the game.
- Bugfixes
- Player feedback on certain problematic systems.

2. Plans for V5:
- Implement monster descriptions, viewable by typing "look at monster".
- Implement player descriptions, viewable by typing "look at player".
- Add journal entries for Section 2, 3, and 4.
- Add artifact entries for Section 2, 3, and 4.
- Add boss abilities for Section 2, 3, and 4.
- Add trait system and effects of traits; curable at Celestial for a high fee.
- Refactor a lot of the code base. Large chunks of the code is quite unwieldy, and would benefit with a code refactoring.
- Implement item renaming.

3. Plans for V6:
- Implement tier 8 and 9 spells.
- Implement section 5 and 6.

4. Plans for V7 and onwards...
- Implement further uses to the look command.
- Implement the "time" mechanic. As implied by the story, you have finite time to complete your task, but will make it so that killing primal chaos and bosses will add to the amount of time available.
- Implement the tutorial...
- Implement special room mechanic.
- Create the fifth section Abyss.
- Create the sixth section Abyss Fortress.
- Create the final boss in the seventh section.
- Create tier 8 and 9 spells.

------

Any feedback provided for me will be very useful in developing the game further. So give me feedback even if it is negative in tone.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 09, 2017, 12:46:21 AM
FAQ:

1. Once reaching the capital city, how do I move on?
A: Type the command "descend" (without the quotes), and you will descend into the dungeon.

2. What if I wanted to return to the capital city?
A: Once in the dungeon you would need to find a Stairwell going Up, and then type the command "ascend".

3. How do I explore the dungeon?
A: Once a room is clear of hostiles, you can explore a new room by typing "explore". However, if there are any investigateables I suggest investigating them before you leave.

4. The game is too easy!
A: Perhaps the floors you are on has lost all challenge. Find a Stairwell going Down and "descend" to the next floor. Or perhaps hunt for one of the bosses in the game, as they are significantly harder than regular monsters.

5. I have all these soul shards. What do I do with them?
A: There is a vendor in the game called the Celestial. They can be found either in the Capital City, or at Shrines you occasionally find in dungeon rooms. You can "buy", "sell", and "salvage items" at the Celestial, once the room is clear of hostiles.

6. I don't know what to do; none of my entered commands are doing anything?
A: Did you look at the command list found in "display info" (without the quotes) and then in "commands". Think of this list of commands as the keybindings in a modern video game, and if you didn't know what your keys were, how would you play the game, right? So I created a list of commands and hopefully a very descriptive explanation of each command within the command list to help people get started.

7. Why can't I explore the surface?
A: The surface acts as a boring start area, with nothing worth exploring. The starting area is in the ruins of the Old Empire's Capital City, that was destroyed hundreds of years ago, and then picked clean of valuables by looters. Thus it is unlikely there is anything left worth finding, which is why exploring is disabled on the surface.

8. Who is this Celestial?
A: Think of the Celestial as an angelic equivalent of Vulgrim from the Darksiders games. They are here to profit from the calamity, and trades their goods and services for soul shards found within the cataclysm of chaos. You aren't sure if helping the Celestial is a good thing, but they are the only vendor around, and thus your choices are limited in buying and selling. The tutorial will have you meet said Celestial and help to make their motivations clearer of why they are helping you.

Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 09, 2017, 12:46:42 AM
Gameplay Tips:

1. You start the game with 300 SS and can buy something with it of your choice. I recommend purchasing the 2nd level spell, Minor Blessing for 300 SS. It will increase your accuracy, dodge, spell resistance and spell penetration by +5 for 10 rounds, which is very handy for the early game.

2. You can view the commands accepted by the text parser by typing in "display info", and then typing in "commands". Otherwise, any text found within ( ), is input accepted by the text parser in specific situations.

3. Each monster is preceded by a specific word, that indicates the type of monster it is. Tough monsters do little damage, but are high on protection and health. Quick monsters do moderate damage, but are high on accuracy and dodge. Intelligent monsters cast spells, and thus target your spell resistance value and often do high damage and have high spell resistance of their own. Primal Chaos monsters are experience drainers, that drain experience with each hit and can drain your levels if you aren't careful or can insta-kill you by draining your experience below 0 when at level 1, however, drainers provide the highest experience points (other than bosses) and provide you with an elixir that raises an attribute by +3.

4. There is a powerful boss at LV 3 sewers and LV 6 ruins. Killing it grants a lot of loot, a lot of experience points, and a boss-specific artifact of immense power.

5. Don't forget that you can always flee from a fight you don't think you can win! Type "flee from target" (where target is the name of the creature) and if it is the first round of that encounter you can escape without being attacked.

6. Enchanting and enhancing your items have varying benefits based on your choice of play style. Enchantment is universally desired by all playstyles, but enhancement is not. Enhancement increases the base value of protection, which in turn makes performing sneak attacks much harder and increase the costs of combat-casted spells. Enhancement of a weapon increases its base damage, which in turn increases all mundane attacks, but also makes sneak attacks harder to do. Enhancement of items is cheaper (250 SS per kit compared to 500 SS per orb) and enhancing armor provides +2 enhancement levels per enhancement kit, whereas most items will only get +1 enhancement level per kit.

7. If you intend to cast spells a lot, then a staff is a must! The enchantment bonus on a staff will increase HP healed, damage dealt and increase the duration of spells by +1 per enchantment bonus. Think of it as a spellcaster using their staff as a focusing point, to boost their power. 

8. Racial choice is important. Everyone starts at 10 in their racial score (ie dwarfs start at 10 in strength and vitality) and 5 in all other scores. Additionally, you only need 500 training experience to gain an increase in an attribute. Finally, race also determines the attributes and health/mana gained at level up of character levels. Thus, certain playstyles are easier to do as a specific race.

9. Performing actions provides experience points for training attributes. Once you earn sufficient XP (either 500 for racial attributes or 1000 for other attributes), you gain +1 attribute and your training XP is effectively reset. Failing at an action builds training experience faster than successes; ie missing a target builds perception faster than if you hit the target. You can also get training from Training Manuals found as loot, rare Tomes of Attribute, or by purchasing training from the Celestial.

10. There is a form of permadeath in the game. The game will end when you die, however, if your vitality attribute is high enough, you can alternatively get a Second Wind. A second wind will restore your health and mana to 50% of maximum values, but reduce all your attributes by -2 (and thus make successive second winds harder and harder). The deeper you are in the game, the harder it will be to have a second wind as well.

11. Killing primal chaos enemies will make all future primal chaos enemies stronger, based on the number of them you have killed. This will also increase the amount of rare items found on them and the amount of experience gained by killing them.

12. The greatsword is a powerful weapon, but also entails risks. It has the highest damage potential of all weapons in the game, provides double strength bonuses to attacks and has double luck bonuses as well. The risk however is that you cannot use it with a shield, meaning you will take far more damage and get hit far more often. However, enhancement kits provides +2 damage per kit, compared to +1 damage for most other weapons.

13. Shields are extremely useful in this game. They will provide both their base protection and enchantment value to your dodge bonus, armor total, and to help you resist enemy spells. However, shield protection value will increase the costs of combat spells and will make sneaking much harder.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 09, 2017, 01:00:49 PM
... that I intend to market commercially, probably on GOG and Steam (if possible), when I've completed it. ...

Oh please don't do that! The marketplace is already polluted enough!

Anyway, besides that, sounds great! I look forward to seeing what it's like.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 09, 2017, 08:41:06 PM
Yeah, yeah, we'll cross that bridge if we get there.

I've managed to stay on schedule and have refactored the code that needed refactoring. Going to do a bunch of UI clean up now (linebreaks, bolding/italics), test the refactored code a bit to make sure I didn't introduce any new bugs and complete the commands list, and should be able to release the first public build tomorrow.

EDIT: Managed to get the command list done tonight. Also managed to do some of the UI clean up and briefly tested the refactored code and found a variety of bugs that I fixed. If I keep myself from adding new features tomorrow, I should have the first release ready to go.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 10, 2017, 01:00:43 PM
Yeah, yeah, we'll cross that bridge if we get there.

Fair enough. :)

I still look forward to see what this project looks like and how it works. Really glad you got through something like this! Even text adventures are complex enough to provide great experience and I'm excited for you!
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 10, 2017, 01:34:48 PM
Yep, I'm pleased that I've gotten things to point that they are. I've gotten a lot more UI clean up done, and fixed some more typos and stuff, so I'm still on track for a release today (today being approximately 1:30PM as I write this in my time zone).

The greatest challenge with the text adventure though, is the concept in the games industry of "show, don't tell." Being that the only real way of showing a player something in a text-adventure is by telling, it has lead to encouraging me to focus on making certain bits of information pop out, and thus empathesize that it is important, while trying to avoid information overload (which is hard as many of the gameplay systems are quite deep and trying to reduce that complexity is very hard, without simplifying the systems themselves). Hopefully for the first release, with a detailed description for each of the ingame commands, found in an ingame help file (thingy) should help to reduce some of that complexity. I try to make the player aware of only the bits of information that they need to in a moment to moment type thing, while if the player desires to, there is also ingame number-trackers, to show your current base accuracy or dodge bonus is and a whole lot of other useful information but not necessarily needed in a moment to moment playing.

Though, with the first release I'll find out if other people find the game fun. I certainly find it fun, but not sure if the same will apply to others. Anyway, just wanted to pop in quickly, and post a quick progress update on the project, before getting back to it!

Edit: Managed to fix up most of the UI that I wanted to address for this update. Not to say the UI is perfect, but should work sufficiently well for the first release at least. I expect that someone may find a typo, or a place that badly needs a line break, or poor grammatical structure, etc... Now, I am going to test the game for an hour or so, to make sure everything is working properly and if I don't run into any issues, I'll post the first release here.

Edit2: Ran the first pass on the game, after compiling it and testing the compiled version to ensure the compiled version works. Runs properly, unsure if it will run properly out of the box for other people as I have the quest game engine installed on my machine. In theory, it should work without it as it can supposedly run in a browser. I'll post a link to the Quest Engine download in case you do need it installed. Found a few typos and UI changes needed, and fixed them. Will now run the second pass on the game, and if I don't find any immediately issues, I'll upload that version as the first release.

Edit3: Ran the second pass on the game, and found critical errors in a certain part of my spell casting system. Will need to repair this section of code to make sure the spells all function correctly. Unsure how long this will take.

Edit4: Fixed the spellcasting code, and fixed a couple other bugs with some of the spells. Running third pass on the game now...

Edit5: Third pass is a success, and working to upload the game now.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 10, 2017, 05:36:05 PM
Alright, after a lot of time and effort, version 1 of Cataclysm of Chaos is released, with the download link in the first post of this thread. I've updated the gameplay tips to give new players some useful information that will help to make decisions. In the future, once I have the tutorial, the tutorial will explain these things to get players up to speed, but as I lack the tutorial atm, use the gameplay tips section here to help yourself out.

I highly suggest you take a look at the commands list found in "display info" -> "commands", as these will help you to play the game as it is meant to be played.

You can provide feedback either in this thread or PM me. As questions get asked / feedback given, I'll update the FAQ with answers. Any kind of feedback is appreciated, even if that happens to be: "I didn't like it / it sucks... and this is why." (telling me it sucks, but not telling my why doesn't help me at all) If you think a place has too many line breaks mention it, or someplace that you think italics, bolding, underlining might work well... or remove them. I can't think of anything else, as I'm a bit scatter brained at the moment from marathoning about 4-5 hours of coding, testing, fixing, and retesting.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Vagabond on September 10, 2017, 08:34:09 PM
lordpalandus,

I wasn't able to get the game to work on a browser, but it worked fine when I downloaded and installed the Quest engine.

I chose to be a human since I liked the idea of spell casting. After entering the city, I did some shopping and purchased a health potion. I also spent some soul shards training luck but couldn't really figure out if the training was effective? Then I was ready to go do some adventuring, but for the life of me could not figure out how to move out of the town into the first dungeon??? Since I couldn't figure out that command, I dropped my robes so I could go streaking across the Imperial City. Afterwards, I couldn't figure out how to pick them back up? When I use the look command I see them on the ground though.

On a different note, MediaFire tries to force me to download spam when I click the link to download your game. After I refuse the spam, it downloads okay, but it is pretty shady trying to tell me my browser is out of date, etc. Media Fire also uses the false download ad banners that make it confusing which link you are supposed to click on. You might want to consider trying to find a more reputable hosting site at some point. Since your game file is so small I imagine there might be some better choices.

Anyways, I'll give it another go at some point when I figure out how to pick up my robes and move to a new location.

-Brett
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 10, 2017, 10:30:39 PM
Hi,

Did you by chance take a look at the commands list found in display info -> commands; I mentioned right after race choice that a full command list can be found there and I also mention it in the game tips reply to this thread? It should mention that to go to the next area to type descend. Or I forgot to mention that. Regardless, I'll add that to the FAQ (how to leave the first area).

Typically to train an attribute you need 1000 xp, so with the starter money you could at best give yourself 300 xp of training. Also mentioned this in the game tips, that i highly recommend everyone reads as I will be updating them from time to time until i have the tutorial in the game.

Good to know on mediafire. ill look around for a different host.

also, how did you drop the robes? Did you unequip them or actually drop them? If they arent in your inventory, then they are dropped. I think you can grab them with the command "take robes", though i had thought i had disabled dropping of items.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Hooman on September 10, 2017, 11:42:00 PM
Quote
Since I couldn't figure out that command, I dropped my robes so I could go streaking across the Imperial City. Afterwards, I couldn't figure out how to pick them back up? When I use the look command I see them on the ground though.

:o

Umm..., Vagabond?

 ::)
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 11, 2017, 01:59:05 AM
Looks like I did not disable item dropping, and didn't enable item taking. Next update will remove item dropping properly. Generally when you don't want an item, you visit the Celestial and salvage it for soul shards. Though, there are times when having different items on hand might be beneficial.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 11, 2017, 11:17:14 AM
I can't figure out what to do. I'm in the celestial whatever and so far no commands do anything other than "You can't do that".
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 11, 2017, 11:19:42 AM
Did you read the command list, in "display info" then "commands"?

You can "buy", "sell" and "salvage items". If you type "buy" (without the quotes), the Celestial will reply with a list of options. If you want to sell, again they will give you a list of options. If you want to salvage, you type in salvage item (replacing item with the item desired to be sold).

Additionally, anywhere the Celestial is, you can also "setup camp" without and risk of doing so.

Hope that helps!

EDIT: Updated FAQ with some common questions/answers found in second post! Updated To Do list for Next Update, found in first post.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 11, 2017, 11:27:17 AM
Well, yes, but I'm just starting the game, what would I have to buy, sell or salvage? Why is it that I can't explore "on the surface", whatever that means? When I enter "look", it just tells me that the celestial is there.

What is the celestial? What is its significance? Why can't I attack it? Why can't I explore the area? Why does look only tell me that the celestial is there? (Cool, I already know that)
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 11, 2017, 11:36:59 AM
The dungeon is meant to be explored, as that is where the calamity is occurring. The surface, currently only serves at the starting area. In older 90s dungeon crawlers, the "surface" could be seen as the town or a safe respite from the monsters. If it is desired, I can put in things worth exploring on the surface, for those that want to explore the surface. Also, the capital city you are in, is in ruins, and has been so for hundreds of years. I'll also look into making the story explanation better for the next update.

You start out with 300 soul shards, which is the currency in the game. If you read the gameplay tips, I suggest buying the 2nd level spell, Minor Blessing, which costs 300 SS. Or you might want to buy healing/mana potions for 50 SS a pop. Or maybe a new weapon, or armor or shield. Or you might want to hold on to it for the time being and save it for something better like a 500 cost enchanting orb, or attribute training.

I intended to build on the significance of the Celestial in the tutorial. However, for the time being, think of the Celestial as an angelic equivalent of Vulgrim from the Darksiders games. You can't attack it because it lacks a physical form; phased; and thus your attacks and spells would pass right through it.

Basically, the starting area is just that, a boring starting area. The sewers and the floors below that are where the interesting action are. Type "descend" to enter the sewers!
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 11, 2017, 11:47:18 AM
The dungeon is meant to be explored...
What dungeon?

The surface, currently only serves at the starting area
What surface? I have no bearings as to where I am when I begin the game.

In older 90s dungeon crawlers, the "surface" could be seen as the town or a safe respite from the monsters.
Cool, I didn't do much when it came to playing 90's dungeon crawlers. Assuming that anybody coming in to this has any idea what to do is a fast way to shoot yourself in the foot.

I intended to build on the significance of the Celestial in the tutorial.
Tutorial?

The sewers and the floors below that are where the interesting action are. Type "descend" to enter the sewers!
See those are instructions that make more sense. But there is nothing to indicate that 'descend' is a command that makes any sort of sense.



All of my questions are illustrating a point. There are no indications of what to do. Like at all. Typing in commands at random hoping to get something to work is frustrating to a player (and was to me).

The greatest challenge with the text adventure though, is the concept in the games industry of "show, don't tell." Being that the only real way of showing a player something in a text-adventure is by telling, it has lead to encouraging me to focus on making certain bits of information pop out, and thus empathesize that it is important, while trying to avoid information overload (which is hard as many of the gameplay systems are quite deep and trying to reduce that complexity is very hard, without simplifying the systems themselves).

Fair points, but there's something to be said about providing no information to the player at all. When I type in look or explore on 'the surface', something other than "The celestial whatever" or "You can't do that on the surface!" should come up. Some indication that I can descend would make it immediately more obvious what to do.

E.g., on the surface I type 'look' and I get something like "Celestial whatever. To your immediate left is a hatch with a ladder leading down".

E.g., on the surface I type 'explore' and I get something like "You search around the area and find a hatch with a ladder leading down".



EDIT: Note here that I'm not putting down but offering insight into how other users will experience this. Granted many users may be very familiar with how this is supposed to work... but many others (like me) will be clueless and will need at least a little bit of guidance to get started.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 11, 2017, 12:07:35 PM
Okay, okay, okay.

So before we go on, did you:
1. Look at the Commands List, ingame by typing in display info and then commands.
2. Read the FAQ.
3. Read the Gameplay Tips.

I ask because these are there to help new players get into the game, as the tutorial isn't present. The tutorial would be designed to explain all these things to a player, but as the tutorial isn't made yet, this is the best alternative available to me.

========

Dungeon; sewers; underneath the ruins of the capital city where all the monsters are coming.

Surface; above ground; not in sewers; the starting area.

Well to be fair, text adventures first came out in the early 60s/70s... so I suppose its entirely valid that that explanation wouldn't make sense. I'll think on how to address that.

I've mentioned in a few times in the outpost-like game thread and even in the first post here that I will design a tutorial for the game and its not built yet. I wanted to get a release out to a few friends, family and you guys, to show you what I've accomplished and thus haven't had the time yet to build it.

Well, I oopsed and didn't mention that in the descend command that to leave the first area, the starting area, the capital city, you type descend. Sorry, my bad.

Well, as for that, that is why I put the command list in, in the first place so that a player wouldn't be typing things in at random... assuming they read it. Now, its on me for not indicating that descend gets you into the dungeon proper.

I didn't think of those. Great suggestions though. I'll add them to the list of things to add for the next update.

Thanks for the feedback.

EDIT: To be entirely fair though, I heavily designed and tweaked the actual areas in the dungeons and thoroughly tested them, but didn't think about testing the surface area, as I was so used to just typing descend and going in. And this is one of the reasons why I needed feedback is because the surface area problems aren't things I had considered problematic. Well now I know, and I'll address a lot of that for the next update.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 11, 2017, 04:18:08 PM
I'm sorry if the above post is snarky.

When I did the majority of my testing it was after entering the sewers, and never considered that players would have issues with the first area. Thus for the next release, things will be made clearer and the command list will be updated, specifically for the descend command.

I'd like to thank everyone who has given feedback, and that I appreciate being told where I've been deficient in my game designing.

Before I release the next build, I figured I'd wait until players gave me some feedback on the actual gameplay, after entering the sewers... to try to bundle in both the initial game changes but also any changes mentioned during the bulk of the gameplay.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 11, 2017, 06:56:13 PM
So...

Has anyone played the game once into the sewers proper? Any gameplay feedback on that?

EDIT: Or has people decided to not play it further because of the bad introduction to the game?

EDIT2: Or is everyone busy; it is a weekday of course...?

EDIT3: Or some other reason?
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Vagabond on September 12, 2017, 01:56:42 AM
I'd like to try it again for you now that I know the descend command, but won't have time for a day or two. Hopefully soon.

-Brett
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 12, 2017, 10:44:47 AM
OK.

I'll probably have V2 ready in a day or two anyway, so how about you test that one. V2 will include a few new spells, a number of UI improvements, and all the things currently listed in the changes list in the first post.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 12, 2017, 01:49:34 PM
I'll wait for v2. :)
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 12, 2017, 02:20:10 PM
Alright. Works for me!
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 12, 2017, 09:07:23 PM
Alright, managed to get all the features I wanted to have in, in for the V2 Release; I still have a large number of features I'd like to implement, but I feel I've added a sufficient amount of content, bugfixes, and UI improvements for one update.

Now, I'm going to spend some time testing out the variety of new systems and if I don't encounter any errors, typos, or bad UI that I inadvertently introduced, then I'll upload the release tonight. If things are really bad, then the release will have to wait till tomorrow.

I've not had a chance yet to find a new file storage yet... but, as the file is only like 100-200 KBs, I could probably just add it as an attachment to the first post, rather than force people to use mediafire; when I have a slow day with hugely complex features that aren't easy to implement, I'll look into other file storage places.

EDIT1: So far things are going okay with the testing. Found a few typos, missing line breaks, and minor code logic missing, but shouldn't prevent a release tonight. Will fix these before releasing though, don't worry. Going to keep testing!

EDIT2: Most of the new systems are working flawlessly, especially the buff tracker in "display info". Unfortunately I ran into a critical error with my combat casting code, and don't know how long it will take to address it.

EDIT3: Most things are working properly besides combat spell casting code. Also found a logic error with my trap damage code... if I have too much enchantment bonus, instead of dealing damage it heals me. Naturally will have to fix that! Its looking like V2 will have to wait to tomorrow, unfortunately.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 13, 2017, 12:49:15 PM
Google drive.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 13, 2017, 01:09:52 PM
Good suggestion, leeor! Hadn't thought of that. Will need to take a look into that!

-----

Alright, after fixing the major errors, adding a few more UI improvements and adding some new quality of life changes, I will begin testing the game again. If I manage to not find any major issues, I'll upload V2 today.

EDIT: After testing it for a bit, I found one minor error that I fixed. Thus, I have now released V2. You can grab it via mediafire or the attachment to the first post. Haven't had a chance to look at Google Drive yet, which is why I'm still using Mediafire.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Hooman on September 14, 2017, 04:59:30 AM
Quote
I heavily designed and tweaked the actual areas in the dungeons and thoroughly tested them, but didn't think about testing the surface area, as I was so used to just typing descend and going in

Hehe, it's this very kind of testing that makes developers blind to how others experience a game. Once you've done something a few hundred times during development, it becomes second nature. "Of course that's how it works!"

Also, it's totally frustrating when you see other people struggling with what you built, or having a bad experience.

I see based on the number of post edits that you're iterating quite quickly. That's a good sign.


I got the sense earlier, that you could play these Quest games online in a browser? Or maybe I'm just assuming that because of the JavaScript. If so, that might be an easy way for people to try new versions, and get quick feedback. I downloaded your source, but stopped short of downloading the Quest Engine executable. Something about the "for Windows" part (I use Linux, though it probably runs under Wine), and the thought of downloading strange executables onto my computer (which controls so many aspects of my life), for a quick few minutes of testing, kind of stopped me. Bit of a mix of lazy and paranoid there. Is there a way to make it easier for people to test?

Your source is actually quite long.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 14, 2017, 09:26:25 AM
Yes, it is kind of interesting. I've helped to beta test several games and it is very common how you do x thing so many times it becomes second nature and you don't even think about it anymore... which is why this kind of feedback is essential to producing a game most people can get into.

Source? Or do you mean the changelog?

----

I took a look at the website and couldn't figure out either how to play it in the browser, so I created a forum post, on the quest engine website, asking how to do so. I'll give an update on the first post (and here) in this thread when I figure that out.

Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 14, 2017, 10:37:46 AM
No, I think he means the actual source. It wasn't hard to 'decompile' the quest thingy -- it's just a ZIP file with a different file extension which contains the entirety of the source code within it.

(https://snag.gy/MwQjW2.jpg)

(https://snag.gy/cu5X3P.jpg)

I'm not sure how much of this code is your own doing or how much of it is automatically generated boiler plate code but... yeah, there it is.  :-X



EDIT: I found a mistake in the code (entirely by chance):

Code: [Select]
case ("tower") {
  if (ListContains(ScopeVisible(), ShieldTower)) {
msg ("You already own a tower shield.")
  }
  else {
if (player.SoulShards > 399) {
  msg ("<br/>You purchase a tower shield.")
  player.SoulShards = player.SoulShards - 400
  AddToInventory (ShieldTower)
}
else {
  msg ("You don't have enough soul shards. You need 2000 but you currently only have: " + player.SoulShards + ".")
}
  }
}

The tower shield is set to 400 shards, but the message says 2000 shards. :-X :-[ :-X

Note sure if this is hand coded but this is clearly the result of copy/paste. I would recommend using a function to print this message that takes three parameters, cost/available currency/item name.



EDIT 2: Google drive -- just go to drive.google.com, sign in with a google account and viola, you have a google drive. Just drag the file into the google drive window and boom, it uploads.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 14, 2017, 11:51:14 AM
Oh, I didnt know the quest extension was a renamed zip.

Actually when I first implemented the tower shield it did cost 2000 SS. It was after testing ingame that I found it was too high, so changed it to 400 and must have forgotten to change the error response to insufficient SS. Will address that in v3

The above screenshot is boiler plate code; I implemented my own custom money system, for example.

Also, quest doesn't allow for greater than or equals, just greater than or less than. That's why my code is partially designed the way it is.

=====

EDIT: Appears to play the game via a browser requires me to upload the game to the Quest servers and then provide a link to players to use. Dunno, if anyone can play it at that point / if it could be made out to others that it is a beta and not a fully finished game. I'll take a look into uploading V2.

I uploaded it here = http://textadventures.co.uk/games/view/rvnjlvi4heq6u7-namkaxa/the-cataclysm-of-chaos  ; Should allow you to play in a browser. If it doesn't immediately work, it may be because it said on the uploader that a moderator would have to check it out first.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 14, 2017, 07:54:42 PM
Oh, I didnt know the quest extension was a renamed zip.
Hackers like me like to look at files to see how they work. When I opened it in a hex editor the first two bytes equated to 'PK' which is a dead giveaway for a ZIP (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zip_(file_format)#File_headers) archive. 28 bytes afterward and you get the filename "game.aslx" which confirms, 100% this is a ZIP archive. Open it in an archive decompressor and you know the rest.

Anyway, totally irrelevant, just found it interesting.



Also, quest doesn't allow for greater than or equals, just greater than or less than. That's why my code is partially designed the way it is.

I assumed as much. The check is correct, the mistake is the mismatched message. :)

I've tried this twice and got destroyed by a rat on the second round of battle... seems a little OP to get flattened that way but I'll give it more time tomorrow.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 14, 2017, 08:29:51 PM
Interesting aside XD

---

I'm looking into having a consistent "you lack SS" message for all purchaseables. I noticed that I have several different kinds of ways of producing the effect. So would like some consistency for all purchaseables. Though, to be honest, the reason the shield code has that problem is because it was one of the earliest bits of code and in general it did its task quite well and thus missed that error as a result.

---

If it was a Primal Chaos Feral Rat, and you had 0 XP, then that is expected logic. All Primal Chaos creatures (as mentioned in the game tips both ingame and in this thread) are experience/level drainers. Every hit they drain experience points. If you are at 0 XP, and get drained to a negative value, then you would lose a level, lose HP/MP as well, and have your XP reset to half of what it would have taken to get the previous level (ie if drained from LV 2 to LV 1, you have 500 XP; if LV3 to LV2, you have 1000 XP; etc). However, if you are at LV 1, and get drained below 0, then the creature will insta-kill you unless you succeed at your Second Wind roll (Vitality + Level + random(1,10) vs (10 + (10 * (Floor Level - 1)) [basically it means that you have to make 10 on floor 1, 20 on floor 2, etc].

You'll know you were killed via XP drain if you get the message = "The creature drained you of your entire lifeforce, and you die instantly."

Primal Chaos creatures are a risk-reward system. They are risky in terms of very good statistics (that increases as you kill more primals) but also because they drain XP. They are good rewards because they offer the best source of XP for character levels, drops an attribute potion that raises 1 attribute by +3, and has higher chances to drop rare items.

Basically, if you are LV 1 with 0 XP, you should avoid them like the plague. Also mentioned in the game tips, if its the first round you can flee from the creature without getting attacked. I'd only go after primals at LV 1 if you have an XP buffer, or if you reasonably think you can one-shot them in the first round. Otherwise avoid them. Again, this just proves that a tutorial is very much necessary, and I think that I'll put some of my plans for V3 aside and focus on building a tutorial instead. I guess I can't expect players to read the ingame gameplay tips, and so the necessity of the tutorial is now, rather than put it off for later. I might be able to get some of my other stuff in for V3, but I do think I need to focus on getting at least the first bit of the tutorial put out for V3.

EDIT:

However, thanks for bringing this to my attention as I noticed two logic errors...
1. XP doesn't get reset to 0 when drained below 0 at LV 1 and you succeed at your Second Wind roll.
2. The way the logic is setup, you'd need 11 to beat 10, rather than being equal to or greater.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Hooman on September 15, 2017, 03:17:03 AM
I didn't even notice it had a different extension. My computer just told me it was a zip file after I downloaded it.

Quote
Note sure if this is hand coded but this is clearly the result of copy/paste. I would recommend using a function to print this message that takes three parameters, cost/available currency/item name.

Agreed, a generic function would be a good idea here.

Quote
Also, quest doesn't allow for greater than or equals, just greater than or less than. That's why my code is partially designed the way it is.

Hah! Yikes. I was just about to say something about that. How about not less than?
Code: [Select]
if !(a < b) {}

Or, just move the error message first, and logic into the else.
Code: [Select]
if (player.SoulShards < item.price) {
  msg ("You don't have enough soul shards. You need " + item.price + " but you currently only have: " + player.SoulShards + ".")
} else {
  msg ("<br/>You purchase a " + item.name + ".")
  player.SoulShards = player.SoulShards - item.price
  AddToInventory (item)
}


If the Primal Chaos creatures are so powerful, why not limit them so the player can't encounter them at level 1. Maybe wait until they go deeper into the dungeon. Plus, you don't want to reward the player too much too quickly if they manage to kill one early on by luck.


Edit:
The online play link looks convenient. Currently I'm stuck at a "Loading..." screen, though I think that has something to do with me being on a bad wifi connection in a far off country. I'll try again later.

Also curious how you're programming this. Are you typing much, or are you using some other kind of interface to generate the code? The website seemed to suggest there was an interface with clicking around and selecting things from menus. I'm wondering what the process is like.

Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: leeor_net on September 15, 2017, 03:21:54 AM
You'll know you were killed via XP drain if you get the message = "The creature drained you of your entire lifeforce, and you die instantly."

That's exactly what happened both times... and both times I was attacked as soon as I entered the dungeon (e.g., immediately after the descend command).


Hah! Yikes. I was just about to say something about that. How about not less than?
Code: [Select]
if !(a < b) {}

You are evil.


If the Primal Chaos creatures are so powerful, why not limit them so the player can't encounter them at level 1. Maybe wait until they go deeper into the dungeon. Plus, you don't want to reward the player too much too quickly if they manage to kill one early on by luck.

Maybe they shouldn't be encountered the second you you look at the dungeon entrance. 0.0

"You have entered the dungeon... and you're dead."
Me: blinks
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 15, 2017, 10:40:25 AM
Technically the enemy retaliation code only activates when you cast a combat spell or attack them with a melee weapon/shield. So you might enter a room with them, but they aren't hostile until you do something aggressive. So if you use the "flee from target" command, after entering the room (and not attacking them) you can flee to a brand new room, with something less dangerous in it. I designed the enemy retaliation code like this so that many actions are considered "free actions" and other actions are considered "time-consuming". Attacking and casting combat spells are "time-consuming". Non-combat spells typically take about a minute or two to cast, and thus why you can't cast them in combat (though I doubt I have that anywhere in the game yet) and other actions like looking at your spellbook, drinking a potion, or analyzing the target are "free actions".

That's why I have the command "flee from target" in the game. Its there to get out of situations that you cannot win and if you try, you will die. Primals are supposed to be dangerous no matter what level you encounter and should incite a sense of fear when encountering one.

However, you two do raise a good point. I'll look into making Primals only spawn on Floor 2 or deeper, so that a new player doesn't get massacred the moment they enter the game. That's not fun.

=====

I can do the "not" Boolean, and I have used it in a few places where it makes the conditional statement both easier to read and simpler to code. When self-learning C++, I couldn't see a value in having a ! conditional statement, but now with coding my own game... its very useful... situationally.
 
I fixed the cost / insufficient funds error already for V3... several hours before your post XD. Its in the changelog on the first post of the thread.

The online play link now works. Apparently, the server went down yesterday and is now up and running again (I tried it and managed to get past the loading screen and have posted the link on the first post of the thread)

EDIT: Made it so that Primal Chaos foes cannot be encountered on Floor 1 anymore; only Floor 2+ for V3.

EDIT2: Heres a screenshot of what the programming looks like to me...
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Vagabond on September 15, 2017, 08:28:06 PM
I found some time to try out your game lordpalandus. Nice Job! I'm really impressed with where you are going with this game and could see it being something that I would be interested in playing if it matures enough. I'm going to list some things I noticed below in gameplay. Read it all knowing that to get your game this far is impressive and I'm just looking to help you keep improving it.

Right now, I think you suffer from forcing the user to be very verbose in their commands. In combat I had to type 'cast arcane zap on primal chaos wasp' 3 times to kill it. I can already tell this will get old. An easy start way to reducing this verbosity might be adding a repeat command so my character will just redo the last action. I also feel like purchasing items in the store becomes very tedious. I really like the atmosphere of the game and don't like seeing it hidden behind verbose commands that might frustrate the player.

In this genre of game it is perfectly fine to make the game illogically hard. Look at NetHack, Angband, and Ancient Domains of Mystery (ADOM), all pivotal games for the genre. They all feature permanent death by deleting save files if the character dies and randomly generating situations that may be impossible for the character to survive. NetHack doesn't even explain what items in game do, so you have to experiment and keeps notes on your own to figure it out. People actually pride themselves in the punishment they take in NetHack and how they have played it for over a year or whatever and never beaten it. Of course these games are free and I think you want to sell yours. So the flipside is if I buy your game and get smoked a bunch on level 1 of the dungeon and can't figure out how to play properly, I'm probably apt to leave you negative reviews. Anyways, what I'm saying is the crowd that play these games may not mind or may even prefer it being difficult or complex to play.



Some specific corrections I noticed below

I was playing v2 on the web browser and noticed some things that could use correcting.

Quote
(cast "spell" at "target) = Casts a combat spell at an enemy target.

Missing a quote on end of target (intro command list)

Quote
It is the year 1023, two centuries after the collapse of the Old Empire. Wierd, warped and horrific to behold creatures have been spotted leaving the Capital City of the Old Empire, and have ravaged the nearby countryside. Day by day, the creatures get bolder and more aggressive, which has led to the sovereign of the current monarchy to deploy the army and protect the citizenry. The army has sent scouts to the Old Empire's Capital City and has discovered that the creatures are leaving via a stairwell leading to the sewer system. The army tried collapsing the stairwell, but the next day the stairwell was back as if nothing had happened. Thus, they sovereign of the land put out a call to adventurers to enter the sewer system, stop whatever is causing the creatures to come out and those that succeed will be granted a generous reward, knighthood, and a title to a large chunk of land! Thus, hundreds of adventurers have flocked to the Old Empire's Capital City, the promise of a generous reward on their mind, compelling them to enter. Unfortunately, none have returned and although the army is able to hold off the current creatures coming out, if something isn't done soon, they will be overcome.

I really like your intro text. It is a bit of a wall though. Perhaps consider trying to cut it into a couple of smaller paragraphs will make it easier to read through.

Quote
> buy
What would you like to buy from me today? (consumables), (training), (weapons), (armors), (shields), or (spells).

> consumables
Would you like to purchase (healing) potions, (mana) potions, enchanting (orbs), or enhancement (kits).

> mana
How many mana potions would you like to purchase; please enter a number. Price per is 50.

> 2

It takes a lot of drilling down in order to purchase items in the store. Maybe you should consider separating the store inventories into tables and separate stores. Maybe it would look like:

> visit item store

Enter the letter and quantity of item you would like to purchase. (A 3 would purchase 3 healing potions)

A) Healing Potion 200ss
B) Mana Potion    200ss
C) ...

> B 2

You purchased 2 Mana Potions.


Consider adding some data when inspecting a weapon or armor. I tried inspecting my staff to see if it required 2 hands, but no info was given in the inspection. So I purchased a round shield and learned the hard way I couldn't hold both.

Quote
> salvage round shield
Error running script: Error compiling expression '(player.TempEnchantShardValue * 0)': ArithmeticElement: Operation 'Multiply' is not defined for types 'Object' and 'Int32'

Something appears wrong with the salvage command.

Quote
You encounter a Primal Chaos Wasp!
Their current health is = 18.


> cast arcane zap at primal chaos wasp
You cast arcane zap at the Primal Chaos Wasp, and you penetrate their spell resistance. You blast them for 6 damage and reduce their health to 12.

Maybe you should use a different pronoun than their for a single bad guy. At least it seems strange to my US English background.

Quote
> cast zap at primal chaos wasp

The Primal Chaos Wasp's spell fails to bypass your spell resistance.

It appears that if I type the name of the spell wrong, it doesn't actually cast but wastes my turn. If I get killed because I typed zap instead of arcane zap, I would feel that is a little unfair.



Melvin the human sorcerer (wearing his robe, he is more modest than his cousin) managed to kill the chaos wasp of death and was rewarded with a luck elixir. But I cannot find the elixir in my inventory? Perhaps it is assumed Melvin immediately and greedily gulped it down? I know I would have. Maybe adding a message saying it was immediately gulped would be useful. I tried checking my luck stat in game, but couldn't figure out how using the HELP command.

Unfortunately, I didn't create an account with the website so I'm leaving my browser open for now. If it shuts down than Melvin will be expunged from the memory of the Celestial City.

Keep up the good work!

-Brett
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 15, 2017, 09:31:53 PM
Thanks for the indepth feedback Vagabond!

-The attack target/cast spell at target commands actually only requires a small part of the target creature's name to perform the action. I think I mentioned this in the ingame tips section and possibly in the command list as well; have to check. Basically for the primal chaos wasp, you can type things like:

1. cast arcane zap at wasp
2. cast arcane zap at primal
3. cast arcane zap at chaos
All three are viable entries.

Also for some creatures, you can shorten their name too. For example, encountering a giant crocodile, you can type "cast arcane zap at croc" and the game will be happy with that.

-I'm fairly sure I implemented the faster to do buy/sell commands in V2. Should be mentioned in the command list. Basically with them if you know you want, like training, you can type "buy training". I also further improved upon this command already for the V3 one, where you can now buy consumables by typing in their name; ie you want to buy healing potions, so type "buy healing potion". Most of the improvements to the alternative buy command will be in V3 to make purchasing less of a chore.

-Well that's why I intend to implement a tutorial to help smooth the initial ride into the game, and once prepared with how things work, leave the player to it. My current attempt in V2, with the game commands list and the ingame game tips is a start, but clearly a need for a tutorial is needed. Problem is, I haven't quite figured out how to properly create the tutorial.

-Good catch on the typo! Will be fixed in V3.

-I'll look into making the "storytime" better for V3.

-The essence of what you have suggested for purchasing, has already been implemented in V3. Sometimes its a bad thing I iterate as quickly as I do >.>

-I'll provide some basic info for when you do "look at item". Thanks for the suggestion!

-Whelp, I deleted the wrong variable as I thought that variable was deprecated (as I had used a different system to calculate salvaging previously when enchanting increased in cost as you did more enchanting.) Will fix it for V3.   

-Maybe I'll change it to: "It's health is currently = XXX". And you are right, their doesn't quite sound right.

-Interesting bug you found with the cast spell at target code. If the name of the spell doesn't line up with a Boolean condition, then nothing should happen; at least that's how I thought I had setup the code. I'll take a look into it. Good eye!

-Hmmm... at the start of the game, it does mention that the command "display info" has a lot of useful information and that is how you'd normally check your attributes, equipment, etc... However, you do make a good point, that when in trouble the go to command should be "HELP". So... I'll see about implementing a help system to provide quick help on demand, for V3. Thanks for bringing this to my attention!

-As for the elixirs, or tomes, or manuals, you will use all of these kinds of things immediately. I'll take a look into making the message that appears when you get one to be more instructive.

Thanks for the vote of confidence!

EDIT:

Fixed most of the issues above, even if they are a simple, temporary fix, for V3.

One other thing that you mentioned that I neglected to add... is a way to name your character. I'll add in for V3 a field for the player's name.

======

EDIT2:

Well, I've gotten 40 changes done to V3, and I think I should get it out ASAP, rather than add more changes. I'll perform a variety of testing to make sure things are working, and if I notice no major errors I'll release it tonight. Otherwise, will be a tomorrow release!

EDIT3:

Found a few minor issues, but haven't tested the majority of my new changes, and as I'm more tired than I thought, tomorrow I'll looking into releasing V3.

EDIT4:

There is a critical error in Shield Spikes that is frustrating me to high hell. The game will properly execute the code to apply armor spikes to armor, but when I use the exact same code copied into shields, it fails to execute and doesn't even post a bug report of why it didn't work. I'm tempted to just advise players to avoid shield spikes in V3...

EDIT5:

... I deleted the variable that applied the shield spikes and replaced it with the exact same variable, verbatim, and it now works. WTF?!?!?!?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?
... I even checked it in code view, and it was the exact same variable in the code both before and after... and it now suddenly decides to work. Huh?
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 16, 2017, 12:31:24 PM
Whelp! I finally managed to test everything I felt needed testing. There are a few areas where a bit of UI work could be done, but I figured I'd do that for V4 and get the most up-to-date game out to you guys/gals to test out.

V3 is available via Mediafire, attachment to the first post, or can be played in a web browser. All of this information is in the first post.

V3 has a lot of new content, bugfixes, UI improvements, and quality of life changes.

Enjoy!
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 16, 2017, 02:26:38 PM
I'm going to do a hotfix for V3.

I forgot to reset the player shards to 300. Currently its at 30,000.

Game is properly hotfixed now.

EDIT:

Found a lot of typos and UI issues well testing V3 again after releasing the hotfix.

I'm planning on releasing another hotfix with this typos/stuff fixed before I work on V4 proper.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 16, 2017, 07:52:21 PM
Alright, hotfix 2 is up and all the links are updated with it. Included a changelog of the fixes for the hotfix.

Will now turn my attention to working on V4.

EDIT:
I think I'll need to do another hotfix. While doing some extensive testing, I ran into a few weird errors that should be addressed immediately, rather than wait for V4. These are:

1. If your bash damage is too low, you can do negative values and heal the target. Not sure why this is happening. I say this because, the way the code is setup up, if you do 0 or less damage, the game should produce the message: You hit the target but failed to penetrate their armor. Maybe some rare edge case is allowing it to bypass this... or I forgot to code the logic right.

2. The buff message that appears when a spell deactivates usually shows up once. For some strange reason, it keeps spamming the message for Analysis spell. The weirder thing is that I don't know the spell and didn't cast it. And the weirdest thing of all, is that for the first 30 minutes of playing this message didn't appear and then out of the blue decided to keep spamming every round. Buying and casting the spell temporarily fixed it, but will have to take a look at why its doing this.

3. I triggered a trap at least 3 times, and now whenever I activate the trap, no message at all gets posted. And no damage is dealt either. It just jumps straight into the looting phase. Will need to figure out why that is.

Also a few other lesser errors were discovered that will be put into this new hotfix.

----

Managed to defeat both bosses, and get boss loot successful from Chaos Orbs dropped. So that is good. I also found a bunch of other errors.

So yah, I'll try to get out a third hotfix tomorrow addressing all the errors I encountered.

Also, will include some balance changes. My dwarven warrior crushed everything in it's path, often one-shotting creatures, being nearly invulnerable for the 2 hours or so of playing the game this time. In particular, primals died way too easily and I didn't break a sweat at all from fighting either boss. The only thing that properly did its job was a Boulder Trap in Section 2 the ruins. THAT thing hurt. Had one that did 180 HP damage... though as I had 450 HP at that point, it hurt but certainly wasn't lethal by any means.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Hooman on September 17, 2017, 03:21:50 AM
Ok, I just gave this a try in the web browser. Interesting. I like the descriptions you give. Very vivid language.

I also felt commands were a bit too long and wordy. I want to be able to just type "flee", not "flee from target".

After creating a new character, it asks me if I'm "new". I thought that was a bit silly sounding. Maybe just tell them they can type help for a list of commands. New players will do this if they need to. Experienced players will just get right into gameplay without answering an extra prompt.

Bonus if you can condense the help into a single screen of text, though that varies for each player, and needs to be complete.

I descended down to level 2, and I encountered maybe 5 primals in a row. I choose to flee, which is where I found the command so wordy. If the primals are so dangerous, and high reward, maybe they should to be a little less common. In most games, experience eating creatures tend to be very rare, or restricted to special areas, like undead graveyards.

I got into a fight with a "Shrieker Bat" after that. In the first round it took down 2/3 of my hitpoints with one spell. I tried to attack again, but the game didn't recognize the creature name. I may have typed the name differently once. I tried "look" saw how it was spelt, and tried to attack again. Seems I'd misread the prompt though. I was back at the prompt to name a new character. I was then named "attack shrieker". I got a big HP boost from choosing my race again. After choosing my race, I again was stuck in the same battle on level 2, had trouble attacking, and ending up choosing my name and race again, for another large HP boost!


Quote
Melvin the human sorcerer (wearing his robe, he is more modest than his cousin)
lol


Edit: Looks like a string formatting issue when searching the spider's web:
Quote
You skillfully dodge out of the way, and the moment it lands on the ground, you smash it with your " + player.EquippedWeapon + "; killing it!
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 17, 2017, 10:14:26 AM
I'll look into refactoring the "flee from object" command. Not sure how complex that will be. In the code, #object# allows you to use a generic variable for interacting with objects in a scene. And if you don't have #object# in the actual command, then you can't use that variable. Thus, if you have a lot of monsters, you would have to duplicate code every time for each monster. By using #object# it reduces code redundancy by a lot. I can understand that "flee" would be a simpler solution for the player, but may be several hours of refactoring for me. Plus, by the time the player gains their first character level, they should have acquired sufficient progression to take on their first Primal Chaos on floor 2. Thus, I've found in my own playtesting that I rarely flee, which is why I don't find the command all that wordy. However I will take a look into how much trouble it will be to refactor it.

It may be a bit silly sounding, but as you guys have pointed out in your feedback, players don't go looking for help most of the time and thus things must be forced into their face so that they don't miss it. For example, in the first release I had the command list in the game, and mentioned how players could get to it, but it seemed no one here found it. It was only after forcing the command list into view, by adding the "new player" prompt, that anyone was able to get into the game period. Granted, the first release did fail on many fronts, particularly guidance for the initial area, which I do apologize for. However, a few of the feedback I've received implies that they never read any of the gameplay tips I put in the game. I'd prefer that a player will go looking for help when they need it, but what seems like a simple and straight forward tactic of telling a player to type "display info" and then "commands" wasn't enough to get the command list to the player. So unfortunately, this prompt is a necessary evil. :(

I don't know what people wanted in the help screen. I can always change it based on feedback.

In the monster spawn code, there are 5 options: Quick, Tough, Spellcaster, Drainer, and Boss. If you aren't on the boss floor or the boss is dead, then it instead spawns a Drainer. So, drainers have a 40% chance of spawning on most floors, and 20% chance of spawning on a boss floor when the boss is alive. Primals cast spells, and thus they only drain XP if and only if they penetrate your spell resistance. So if you have high spell resistance or you kill the primal in one hit, then you can defeat a primal with ease.

That is an extremely weird edge case scenario. I've never encountered it. I'm not sure how you could have encountered it. It seems like the codebase is doing weird things lately, for unexplainable reasons. The way I have it setup in the code, the room that most of the action takes place in is entirely separate from the room that a player is in when they do character generation. And as I don't have anything in the entire codebase that allows you to get back to the character generation room, that I know of, debug control or otherwise, I'm not sure how you had this happen to you. As the character generation script is built directly into the room and thus isn't a free-floating script, I haven't the foggiest idea how this could have happened. Plus, in Quest, objects do not normally transfer to another room unless the programmer builds in this functionality. I'll post on the Quest forums to see if anyone has an idea of how this might happen.

Yes, noticed that one for the spider web. The print message was supposed to be set to "expression" but forgot to do so. Easy fix. Will be in the 3rd hotfix.

Thanks for the feedback!

EDIT: I posted a thread on their forum, you can take a look at it and give your opinions on their responses. Also added two weird cases of my own that I encountered. Link to that post = http://textadventures.co.uk/forum/quest/topic/tyd_mwgm4es8qelorf3pxa/i-have-some-very-wierd-things-going-on-in-my-codebase-unexplainable-things-wtf

EDIT2: The hotfix will have to wait until I get a response to the above thread. Until I know why my codebase is inexplicably failing, in improbable ways, that defies programming logic, I should probably wait on working on the code. Its possible that after enough complex syntax and logic, that the Quest Engine simply fails and then starts to produce unlikely logic that shouldn't be happening. But perhaps the people on the forum will know what is going on.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 17, 2017, 04:25:47 PM
Well, I've managed to solve a few of the logic errors I ran into in my own playthrough. Still have no idea what causes Hooman's error though, and no one on the other forum knows, so I've completed hotfix 3 and updated the first post. Fixes some logic errors, improves specific parts of the UI, and modifies gameplay balance to add more challenge for a warrior-esque playthrough, but should have a low-marginal impact on other playstyles.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Hooman on September 17, 2017, 07:44:27 PM
Quote
In the code, #object# allows you to use a generic variable for interacting with objects in a scene. And if you don't have #object# in the actual command, then you can't use that variable.

Do you really need this object? The monster name is used in the flee message, but I don't think that's particularly important. Plus, even if you type an abbreviated monster name, the full monster name is displayed in the flee message, so that string is available elsewhere in memory, even if the player doesn't type it.

Quote
Thus, if you have a lot of monsters, you would have to duplicate code every time for each monster. By using #object# it reduces code redundancy by a lot.

I've never encountered more than one monster at a time. Is that possible?


As for the character creation bug, I started a new player, immediately descended, then in the first room where I encountered a Giant Fire Ant I typed "look" as my first command. I ended up back in character creation. After creating that character, as soon as the game starts, before descending, I typed "look", and again ended up back in character creation. As long as I keep typing Look, I keep getting more HP and MP.  :)

Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 17, 2017, 09:00:34 PM
The string is attached to the monster, which is an object. The #object# targets any monster in the room. As there are different objects for different monsters and bosses, you'd need to manually code in that you flee from monster a, monster b, monster c, monster d, and every single boss. So I don't necessarily NEED #object# but it greatly reduces code redundancy.

Only if I code the logic wrong XD

I managed to partially reproduce your bug. Typing look in the character creation room will cause you to go through character creation again... which is logical, as the character generation code is built into the room description and the command look normally displays the room description. However, I couldn't replicate the error when you get...

Wait a second... When you started the game, did you hit "descend" immediately after creating your character, or did you hit "begin" and then "descend"?

...

You hit descend immediately. I just tried hitting descend in the character generation room, and you can indeed descend. And any time you type "look" in the character generation room, you will regenerate your character.

Well, at least I now know what causes this bug. I'll have it fixed for the next release.

Please, until then, type begin after creating your character, to get moved to the game proper. You'll know you did it right when it says you are in "Old Empire's Capital City".

Well, I'm happy that's cleared up!
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: Hooman on September 17, 2017, 10:41:24 PM
Bah! You mean you're going to fix the hack I discovered to get super powerful right at the beginning of the game? I should never have reported it.  ;)


Post the code for why flee needs an object!  :D
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 18, 2017, 11:12:30 AM
Hahaha... sads. I never thought that line of reasoning would be used against me... lol... However, unlike most developers who patch out the only effective way to progress and leave players with horrible grind (I'm looking at you Destiny 1, Borderlands 2, Diablo 3, etc), you will find more loot the deeper down you go, so there are still a variety of effective ways to attain progression quickly. For example:

PRO TIP: Get the spell Terrify, cast it on foes to clear them from the room, and then investigate the room without fighting/possibly dying to the monster to investigate the room! And unless you get a trap, those investigatables generally have a lot of valuable loot.

====

The code includes the monster retaliation script which is fairly large. However, there is four instances where the #object# is used in the script:
1. You manage to sneak away without alerting the #object# of your presence.
2. You attempt to flee without getting hit by the #object#.
3. You flee from the #object# and enter a new room.
4. #object# HP = currentHP * 0 + maximumHP.

So, I have four monsters, and 4 bosses currently. That would mean that in every situation of #object# usage, I'd have to explicitly type the monster/boss. So instead of having 4 lines of code that covers all 8 "objects". I'd instead need 32 lines of code, to cover all objects + any time I add new monsters or bosses, I'd have to remember to add those lines to the flee from object command. So it could be done, but would require a lot of time and effort to maintain and would make the code really ugly to work with, as I'd have to sift through the duplicated code sections and get to the areas I need to modify; namely the monster retaliation script.

With the way it is currently designed, any time I add a monster or boss, I only need to update the monster retaliation script. Plus, if I had to do it with each individually named object, I'd have to use CopyPaste to post the exact same message, just for a different critter.

That's why I'm hesistant to change it. Its elegant and efficient. However, what we could look into is changing the format of the command to something shorter. Unfortunately, "Flee from Object" sounds the best.

=====

An alternative solution would be that if you flee from a drainer or boss, then the next monster encountered is a Tough, Quick, or Spellcaster. As you were using flee from object constantly to avoid drainers and kept getting them, this could potentially resolve your issue in a different manner. If you didn't have to use the command as often, would the command still feel wordy?

EDIT: I've implemented a possible solution into the code. Anytime you flee from a drainer or boss, you will get a Tough, Quick or Spellcaster. If you flee from a boss, you can't get a drainer right after, only one of the three. If you flee from a drainer on a boss level, you can't get a boss right after, only one of the three. That should cut down on the unfairness in the monster generation code.

I'll have to test it out to make sure I implemented the code properly though.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 20, 2017, 09:24:34 PM
Well, Release v4 is coming along nicely. I had wanted to implement a bunch more things, but would like to get a few of the new systems out for players to try out and give feedback on.

V4 will include:
1) Section 3, and Section 4; this means new room generation scripts, 3 new investigatables for each section, 20 new monsters for each section, a boss for each section and boss loot for each section.

2) The new storytime system. Will be broken up into 3 categories; backstory, journals, and artifacts. Backstory is what it is currently in V3. Journals are found on adventurer corpses, and provide a bit of extra fluff and lore for the player to immerse themselves in. Artifacts has information on the artifacts themselves once you've defeated the boss. Hopefully this gives players that like to read lore and immerse themselves in a world to greatly help out in that regard. I'll be adding in V4 journals for the Sewer Section only, and artifacts for Sewer Section only, but more to follow later. Also, I'll give a bit more backstory entries to read for players interested in reading it.

3) 7th tier spells, particularly Ultra Heal, Ultra Aid, Power Weapon II, and Force Shield II, to name a few of the new spells.

4) Implement a UI option for renaming your equipped items. So, for example, you could rename your equipped longsword into a warhammer; its stats would remain the same, but it might help the player who is trying to roleplay a particular character to help to immerse themselves better.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 21, 2017, 02:05:23 PM
Well, fuck.

While adding the 7th tier of spells to my buy command, the buy command broke. I managed to add the new spells to tiers 1 to 6 without issue. But after adding spells to 7th tier, my buy command now refuses to compile or even load in the UI. I've deleted the entire 7th tier, and the issue remains. I've posted a help request in the other forums. If they can't solve the issue, then the next release will be delayed for anywhere from a few weeks to months.

The purpose of the buy command is to allow players to control the RNG. A problem in RNG heavy games is that sometimes the game will favor you and other times it will give you the finger. The buy command is there to mitigate that RNG so that if the looting of items keeps giving you the finger, then you can purchase the things you need from the store. But if you have no store, then the player has really no way to mitigate that RNG. So if I don't have the buy command in place, then a major and extremely crucial part of the game design will not be present. And as this would help my game stand out from other roguelikes (as most roguelikes lack a reliable way to mitigate the RNG), then its just a rehash of older games.

So, I don't know what I'm going to do if the buy command is permanently borked.

Sigh...

EDIT: Updated my first post of the thread with the current source of V4. If I can figure out a way to get around this situation, I'll gladly keep developing the game and the source will simply serve as a backup copy. If not, then likely I'll just start a brand new project from scratch as the buying system is a critical core functionality of the game, and the game will not play properly without it. It is also, if I would market it, be my competitive advantage over other roguelikes and without it, why would someone play my game over so many other generic roguelikes out on the market already. I'm not trying to downplay the value of the other features that I have, but the entire game design focuses around the ability to mitigate the RNG and without a way to mitigate the RNG, then it will not play properly and will not feel fair.

Unfortunately...

EDIT2: It appears the problem is localized in my spell purchasing code. This means I won't have to rebuild my entire buy command, but will likely have to rebuild my spell purchasing code. So instead of a repair job of 2-4 weeks, it might take me 2-4 days to repair it.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos (working title)
Post by: lordpalandus on September 23, 2017, 11:53:27 AM
Well, after working on a few different ways to rebuild the spell buying code, I've devised a solution that works elegantly. It will also make adding new spells significantly easier than the old system and will allow you to keep purchasing spells if you are inclined to do so.

Now I just need to re-add all the old spells to the new system. Just wanted to give a quick update on this, and once I've finished implementing it, and tested it to make sure it doesn't bork again, I should be able to get back on track.

EDIT:

Implemented and tested the new spell purchasing system and it works. Works so well, that I plan on using it to refactor the rest of my buy command code at a later date.

Alright, whew! Okay, now that the spell code is in, I'll finish up Section 4 (investigatables and boss loot), finish the last few journal entries for the sewers, and then likely release V4. Its likely that I'll do bugfixes for V4 when it is released, rather than do extensive testing beforehand, as it will take me a while to get down to section 3/4 in a playthrough, and simply intersperse the bugfixes with story/lore updates thrown in as well. I'm doing it this way for V4 as I already missed my release date for V4 and don't want people to have to wait too long for V4 now that I've addressed the buy command issues.

EDIT 2:

Finished Boss Loot for Section 4.

Once I'm done Investigatables for Section 4 and the last few Journal Entries for Sewer Section, I'll release V4. Barring any cataclysmic failures, I should have it released today (Sept 24)

EDIT 3:

Nearly ready for the release. Journal entries are in for sewers, and have one more investigatable for Section 4 to do. I'll likely again release bugfixes like I did for V3 release, rather than do the testing right away. I feel people have been waiting long enough for this release and want to get it out to players hands as quickly as possible.
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos V4
Post by: lordpalandus on September 24, 2017, 02:44:04 PM
Released V4 and all links are updated. If necessary I will post bugfix updates for this one like I did for V3.

Release V5 will be focused primarily on adding a massive amount of lore/story to the game, a huge effort to refactor the codebase as some portions are getting somewhat unwieldly to maintain, and continue to hunt for ways to make the UI much better. 

Hope you enjoy, and am looking forward to any feedback anyone has, positive or negative of V4. Cheers!
Title: Re: Cataclysm of Chaos V4
Post by: lordpalandus on September 24, 2017, 09:57:19 PM
Found a logic error in one of the Section 4 boss loots, that affects the spellcasting system. I have fixed it and will release hotfix 1.

Also, I implemented a new quality of life system; you can now recast the same spell over and over again, to your hearts content... until you run out of mana or die that is XD.