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Author Topic: Manual aim  (Read 1346 times)

Game Hunter

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Manual aim
« on: April 05, 2010, 22:00 »

So I'm playing a game (what else would I possibly be doing) and, as usual, the bullet pathing can sometimes be a little screwy when it comes to walls.  The example that happened just now:

(1)i.#  (2)X.#  (3)i.#
   #.#     #X#     #.#
   #.#     #.X     #X#
   #.#     #.X     #X#
   #.@     #.@     #.@

The original scenario (1) has the player peering down a hallway with an imp on the other side in another doorway: naturally you'd want to just aim for the imp and fire. however, if I do that, I get an impossible pathing (2)  that will simply shoot into the wall if I try to do it.  If I instead aim in a manner that's short of the target (3) but will continue on according to the "slope" of the bullet, I hit the imp just fine.

Another case I can think of involves single-tile walls:




The original case (1) has the player hiding from a baron (the baron is also hidden from sight but the player knows it's there).  Firing within the normal sight range of three tiles past the wall (2), the aiming is perfectly fine.  Go farther than that (3) and the aim tries to shoot INTO THE WALL.  I'll be honest, I have died on a couple of occasions at The Wall because of this problem (and trying this shot with a rocket launcher).  Unfortunately, unlike the first example, you can't simply aim short, as the target isn't close enough to shoot here.

While this is an annoying problem, I could see of it as a way of becoming yet another aspect of the game: limited aim.  This could be done in two ways of varying scope:

1) Quite literally decrease the range of firing.  The shot will continue on until it hits something, but you can only fire as accurately as your to-hit chance.  Everything within the to-hit chance has a maximum chance of hitting (98% currently, could be more or less as balancing requires), whereas everything else not only scales down in accuracy, but is impossible to "aim" at.  Eagle Eye suddenly becomes a lot more useful, as the +2 to-hit increases your aiming by two.  For shotguns I would suggest enforced limits based on the spread of the weapon (as an example: two for the normal shotgun, three/four for the combat, one for the double).

This first option has a few implications, such as enemies having the same problem...their own to-hit chances will correspond to firing ranges.  Another consideration is that, outside of your aim there is a distribution of where the bullet will land, a cone of possibilities; the surest path is the most likely, but straying from the path is possible (and will have to be, if you ever want to hit anything with an unmodded rapid-fire) and should be taken into consideration when firing.  In such a setup, the best chance of shooting an enemy is in the eight standard directions, whereas other regions are blurred.  Considering this game is completely square in its format, I don't think this is asking for too much sacrifice in terms of realism.  Naturally you'll be able to shoot better along a wall with an inaccurate weapon (something to line up your shot against) as opposed to out in the open.  Another consideration, obviously, is what to reset all the to-hit chances to.  Two is a bit low, three makes more sense for chainfire...double pistols should probably have less to-hit than a single: furthermore, aiming would become an extremely beneficial attribute to the weapon.

2) Make shots outside of your visibility impossible.  This doesn't mean you can't shoot things outside of your range, but wall-shots, for instance, would basically be impossible.  They should be, to be honest: trying to shoot down a hallway you're standing in either means your weapon is still in the hallway (and is therefore capable of being shot at) or you're shooting at an angle, which can only go so far.  If, on the other hand, you want to shoot at a ridiculous angle like that, there should be a tactic (probably not in the same bunch as Cautious/Running/Tired, but you should know what I mean) that sacrifices movement for an increased vision along the walls...something along the lines of Prone or Mounted.  Of course, you'll have full vision against the wall, but it takes a couple seconds to get into position and a couple seconds to get out, so it's entirely meant for when you're sure you only have to worry about the heavy angles.

Of course, the original setup is fine the way it is.  I'm just throwing some ideas out there (which is why this is neither in Bug Reports in spite of the buggy aiming, nor Requests for Features as it's more of something to think about than direct add to the game) that would make this game stand apart from other roguelikes.  Certainly either of these options would change a ton in terms of strategy, for better or harder.  In any case, I'm interested in other peoples' thoughts on the current aiming system and what could be changed to improve the system.

EDIT: Fixed up some issues with the graphics.
« Last Edit: April 05, 2010, 22:02 by Game Hunter »
I'm just a dude playing a dude disguised as another dude.

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