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Shadow
10-08-2009, 02:36 PM
The caves and dungeons in Din's Curse are completely random. Each dungeon will use different models, different textures, use secrets in different ways, have special rooms, favorite monsters, and completely different layouts. My goal is for each type of dungeon to have a fairly distinct feel, but yet each time still be quite different.

Unlike many action RPGs, we'll have random secrets in our levels to make things more interesting. Sometimes these will be hard to find and other times fairly easy. Each dungeon type will use secrets in different ways- like having all of the secrets at dead ends, or all hidden inside rooms.

Although they are a very old idea often used in roguelike games, special rooms are not very common. A special room is basically a named room randomly placed inside of the dungeon that behaves differently from a normal room. In our case there are vaults, armories, treasure rooms, and lairs- each with a lesser, normal, and greater version.

Vaults have a ton of gold and are usually heavily trapped to keep out intruders.

Armories store lots of weapons and armor racks.

Treasure rooms are filled with chests and usually monsters.

Lairs are the homes of special, harder than normal creatures (champions and elites). However, they also store all of their loot here. Lairs can be death to a standard adventurer, but they also are one of the best places to find loot.

Each dungeon type will look different with different models and textures but they also will have different layouts. Some have lots of open space while others have very tight hallways and small rooms. A cave might have lots of curvy, long hallways or instead have huge caverns. I could go on and on I suppose, but let's get to the examples. BTW, in the final game, the maps will look a bit more cluttered and the ground won't be a uniform brown.

To see the layout examples go here (http://www.soldak.com/Blogs/Steven/Din-s-Curse-random-dungeons.html).

Delilah Rehm
10-08-2009, 02:59 PM
The pictures are pretty neat.

SharpCarlos
10-08-2009, 03:05 PM
I had kind of thought that the "make the random layouts" phase of development wouldn't yield a blog post. I'm glad I was wrong, because the way you're approaching it is really interesting, and sounds great. Different dungeons will have different "character", and not just due to different textures or whatever. They'll actually play differently, which is terrific. A high DPS melee character will love the twisty mazes, but he'll be wishing he had some area-of-effect spells when he's in the middle of a wide-open cavern.

I've always loved special rooms in rougelikes. Again, it makes a random level more than just "Will I go right or left this time?".

Shadow
10-08-2009, 05:15 PM
Yeah, I'm trying to make people actually want to adventure around and explore the dungeons looking for secrets and special rooms.

As for the blog, I've been trying to blog more often. My problem is I'm never quite sure what people are going to find interesting.

getter77
10-08-2009, 06:38 PM
This dungeon bit sounds absolutely fantastic.

(name here)
10-08-2009, 09:02 PM
Nice. I think this may actually qualify as the best random terrain generator, in terms of variablity. Certainly the best i've seen in a game, although Dwarf Fortress can sometimes yield interesting results.

If anyone finds a dungeon that includes every special room, upload your save file.

Qwerytykeys
10-09-2009, 12:50 AM
Looks great!

As for the blog, I've been trying to blog more often. My problem is I'm never quite sure what people are going to find interesting.
I would definitely find interesting info on the mage class, as I am at least going to have one skill line from it for my main character. ;)

Shadow
10-09-2009, 10:13 AM
I will probably, eventually, post about the classes. It will probably more on the main site than my blog though.

pnutz
10-09-2009, 01:27 PM
I certainly enjoy every update and find all this stuff interesting! It's great that you are looking to roguelikes for inspiration, as there are a lot of good ideas that haven't made it into non-ascii games yet.

A couple of unsolicited suggestions for rooms and whatnot:

Portal room
Appears as a regular door into a small empty room, but when the threshold is crossed the PC is teleported to a isolated single room filled with baddies. The exit will not appear until you kill them all. It could also simply trap the player in the original room, but that's not quite as fun.

Trapdoor
Olde tyme Rogue staple, where your are dropped into the lower level of the dungeon, possibly in the middle of a very bad situation. This assumes that there will be multi-leveled dungeons of course.

Arena
A regular room full of baddies. After beating them, you pull some lever to spawn additional, harder baddies (or have them spawn automatically, with some indication that it's going to happen if you remain in the room). This keeps going as the baddies get harder to point of near-impossibility. Surviving all the waves nabs you phat l00t.

Fairy Room
A zelda-ish room full of fairies or something where you are healed and buffed once, or perhaps un-cursed or un-diseased if those are going to be a pain to get rid of. Monsters will not follow you in. So it's kind of a super-shrine. It could grant a permanent buff/stat increase to differentiate from regular shrines.

Portal to the Abyss
Similar to the Arena with wave after wave of goons, but the baddies won't stop coming until you shut off the portal (destoying some big-HP statue, a boss monster, or maybe even an idol somewhere else in the dungeon). So if you chicken out or die, the baddies will start flooding out of the room and into the rest of the dungeon.

Areas that feel lived-in or consciously designed are generally lacking in procedurally generated roguelikes, but that fourth map down looks like an actual planned, lived-in area. It would be great if some of the maps generated have symmetrical, old-ruins layouts similar to that one, with great halls and orderly quarters.

FloodSpectre
10-09-2009, 02:09 PM
Very cool. Do you have any plans on a mapping system yet, or any indicators for special or secret rooms? I never played Diablo 2 without my map up on the side of the screen. I was always the navigator for our parties :)

Shadow
10-09-2009, 07:15 PM
Cool ideas pnutz.

I am planning on having trap doors, might do something similar to the fairy room, and the portal thing might actually be a quest. An arena room would be kind of interesting.

Very cool. Do you have any plans on a mapping system yet, or any indicators for special or secret rooms? I never played Diablo 2 without my map up on the side of the screen. I was always the navigator for our parties :)

Right now the mapping system is similar to the ones in Depths of peril and Kivi's Underworld. The game will tell you when you find a secret or special room.

Shadow
10-12-2009, 04:32 PM
I posted a few more map examples on my blog (http://www.soldak.com/Blogs/Steven/Din-s-Curse-random-dungeons-2.html) that have some actual color in them.

torikamal
10-13-2009, 12:17 AM
Man, this is cool!

icekrystal10
10-15-2009, 07:46 AM
Wow this kind of randomization is nice! The more I learn about this game the more I forget about that big company with their big game.

Shadow
10-15-2009, 09:20 AM
Assuming you mean Diablo 3, we are likely to ship over a year before it. :)

Delilah Rehm
10-15-2009, 09:52 AM
What big game??? :confused: I thought I heard of something but I'm too distracted to pay attention. :p (hehehe)

Kruztee
10-15-2009, 08:28 PM
What big game??? :confused: I thought I heard of something but I'm too distracted to pay attention. :p (hehehe)

From what I've seen from trailers and interviews, there's very little that I find remotely interesting about it. And I was a massive fan of both Diablo and Diablo2. I understand that this is not a forum for the discussion of other games, so I'll leave it at that. But in terms of competition with Din's Curse, I seriously doubt that Soldak would lose even one prospective sale of their game to it for a good few reasons.

Gunner
10-16-2009, 12:36 PM
Great update Shadow. Looking to Roguelikes for dungeon design ideas is the way to go in my book.

One things I've missed in action RPGs like Diablo and DoP that is modeled nicely in some Roguelikes I've played is effects from terrain. That is, there is more differentiation between various terrain objects that being able to walk there or not. For instance, you'll be better able to damage a massive dragon if you're whacking at it while standing on a pile of rubble than just from the floor. Similarly for ranged attacks and elevation. There are plenty of other ways this could be incorporated with things like defensive modifiers too.

Not so sure if this would be so applicable to Din's, but I think its a neat idea that adds to the dungeon crawling experience nonetheless.

Shadow
10-16-2009, 02:05 PM
We do have slippery surfaces now like oil and ice that slow you down and effect your combat abilities a bit.

icekrystal10
10-17-2009, 11:03 AM
We do have slippery surfaces now like oil and ice that slow you down and effect your combat abilities a bit.

Cool! I bet the "big game" won't have things like that. Hehe.

Gunner
10-17-2009, 04:58 PM
We do have slippery surfaces now like oil and ice that slow you down and effect your combat abilities a bit.
Nice! As much stuff like that as you can would be great.