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Author Topic: New trait suggestion - Aggregator  (Read 2600 times)

Sylph

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New trait suggestion - Aggregator
« on: October 14, 2010, 10:36 »

Lamenting the loss of fireangel, there's very little for a general-combat build to pick from for master traits. All of them, in the current version, tend to favour a single weapon type.
DoomRL can be a great deal of fun when a player is opting to use an array of different weapons tactically, and the only thing we've really got going for us is 'juggler' (which is pretty much essential to playing DoomRL with all weapon types). This trait is designed to make all weapons more viable in the late game, without focusing on a single one...


Aggregator

Finesse(2), Juggler, Brute, Son of a gun, tough as nails

Some of the marines back at UAC just don't appreciate a well-tidied backpack. The advantages are obvious: Using items or swapping any equipment is totally instantaneous!

Blocks - Shottyman, triggerhappy, intuition.




Just thought I'd throw it out here as a way of of somewhat replacing the sad loss of fireangel, and making all-round builds more competative, without being an absolute must for these character types.

[Edit: Name and description changed]
« Last Edit: October 15, 2010, 09:53 by Sylph »
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Re: New trait suggestion - Packrat
« Reply #1 on: October 14, 2010, 18:35 »

Hm.  I can understand how this trait is useful, but I'm not sure if "Packrat" is the best way to describe it.  If memory serves me well, packrats like to hoard stuff, so maybe increase in number of items you can carry in your backpack will be a better definition for "Packrat"?

How about calling it something else, like Hammerspacian (instant pulling from backpack akin to hammerspace), Indexer (if you indexed stuff, you pull things out faster) or something along those lines.
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Sylph

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Re: New trait suggestion - Packrat
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2010, 19:43 »

You're right about the name....
Indexer is better. How about 'Aggregator', or 'weaponologist'?
« Last Edit: October 14, 2010, 19:45 by Sylph »
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Thomas

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Re: New trait suggestion - Packrat
« Reply #3 on: October 15, 2010, 04:34 »

I like the idea, but the gameplay effects are a bit off:

Most general characters either swap between area weapons and shotguns (or area and rapidfire) and don't use melee or pistols at all, so it would be another master trait that requires you to waste your 4th and 5th trait. The benefit is almost worth it, though.

The trait is a bit too specialised. Chainguns would be pretty much totally useless as you build it up, because TaN(1) Fin(2) is a very shotgun-centric* build, and they would certainly be your first 3 traits.
*shotgun-centric: Any build that gets any traits aside from EE and SoB/TH


I'd suggest changing it to this:

Aggregator

Finesse, Juggler, Reloader, Eagle Eye, Tough as Nails, Ironman

Some of the marines back at UAC just don't appreciate a well-tidied backpack. The advantages are obvious: Using items or swapping any equipment is totally instantaneous!

Blocks - Shottyman, triggerhappy, intuition.



I like Aggregator, by the way. The word is about as manly as "someone who carefully sorts things" could possibly get. Fits an OCD doomguy character well.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2010, 04:46 by Thomas »
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Sylph

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Re: New trait suggestion - Packrat
« Reply #4 on: October 15, 2010, 09:49 »

I like the idea, but the gameplay effects are a bit off:

Most general characters either swap between area weapons and shotguns (or area and rapidfire) and don't use melee or pistols at all, so it would be another master trait that requires you to waste your 4th and 5th trait. The benefit is almost worth it, though.
Point taken, but just switching between area weapons and shotguns is perfectly managed with 'juggler', and doesn't really make a character 'general', so much as 'less specialised'... I was aiming for players that were happy using pistols, shotguns, rapidfire weapons, explosive weapons, and melee weaponry. Say, pistol + combat shotty + rocket + plasma + chainsaw.
Also, when you say 'the benefit is almost worth it', that is pretty much ideal, in my mind. Given that such a character can benefit hugely from *any* unique or exotic weapon that falls on his lap, there's a strong chance that, in a typical game, such a character will end up with an awesome weapon to offset 'almost worth it' into 'worth it'.
Quote
The trait is a bit too specialised. Chainguns would be pretty much totally useless as you build it up, because TaN(1) Fin(2) is a very shotgun-centric* build, and they would certainly be your first 3 traits.
*shotgun-centric: Any build that gets any traits aside from EE and SoB/TH
I agree that this trait perhaps limits chainguns too much, but chainguns are a bit of a 'specialist' weapon, made for a heavy weapon guy kinda marine, and a player than is filling his inventory slots with so many different weapons had damn well better be thinking about conserving what little ammo he has space left to store, so pistols and melee make a lot more sense than trying to accomodate chainguns.
Also, I wouldn't call any build that uses shotguns 'shotgun-centric'. Starting out with juggler gives a pretty much 50/50 split between shotguns and pistols in the current game, and where you go from there is a totally open decision - you can go for eagle-eye and get chainguns, reloader for a shotgun specialisation, SOAG for pistol use, or brute for melee, all with pretty equal success.

Quote
I'd suggest changing it to this:

Aggregator

Finesse, Juggler, Reloader, Eagle Eye, Tough as Nails, Ironman

Some of the marines back at UAC just don't appreciate a well-tidied backpack. The advantages are obvious: Using items or swapping any equipment is totally instantaneous!

Blocks - Shottyman, triggerhappy, intuition.
I'd argue that forcing eagle eye is worse than forcing SOAG and brute. I included SOAG and brute in the requirements so that, should a player go for this master trait, all his options are open at that point. Without SOAG and brute in there, there would be little reason to go for melee or pistols, since shotguns and chainguns would be so much better after he'd picked eagle eye and reloader. Your requirement suggestions make sense, but they're effectively trading an opportunity for pistol + melee for a necessity for shotgun + chaingun, which I'd argue is more harmful to an all-round playstyle, particularly because shotguns are already highly useful to an all-round character type, without needing extra traits, and chainguns are actually detrimental to the build because of inventory space (as mentioned, above).
Furthermore, having eagle eye as a requirement makes pistols a litle pointless, and thus closes off options. It also makes it a little easy to clean up with plasmaguns, and I didn't want this trait to be overpowered. 'Almost worth it' was pretty much bang on, imo. Eagleeye would also block vampyre, and while that's not the biggest of concerns, I felt that having life-leech is one of the most appealing aspects of going melee in a standard game, even if it would require basically all of your character traits to get the two.
Also, forcing reloader is a wasted trait slot in itself - a character using all weapon types and juggler doesn't get much benefit, in fact probably almost no benefit, from quicker reloading.

My thinking was that forcing SOAG and Brute was actively encouraging a player to use melee and ranged attacks in addition to shotguns and explosions, but perhaps that was a little heavy-handed.

Agreed, 'Aggregator' is probably the best so far.

And I love your description,by the way. Sounds great.
« Last Edit: October 15, 2010, 10:10 by Sylph »
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Re: New trait suggestion - Aggregator
« Reply #5 on: October 16, 2010, 01:20 »

You seem to be basing this idea off of the fact that a character could possibly be at a point where any build is viable to them. Really, this is only true of exceptional players that are playing on H,NTR for some reason. The effects of this trait don't really encourage variety any more than juggler does, and juggler isn't enough to make a character with 6 weapons suddenly proficient with all of them.

What this trait does do is "provide a huge bonus when you're suddenly completely screwed". Something that buffers your bad luck, really.

Even with SoG and Bru as one of the 6 buildup traits, it's a very poor choice for pistol or melee builds. (Well, pistol builds especially.) Pistols and melee weapons are very weak, so their traits are very strong (SoG is 2Fin + 1SoB, Bru is 3SoB + 2EE). Any build that doesn't involve a lot of these traits will be useless to them.

Of course, you could always go pistols/rapidfire/rocket launcher, but by that point you have 2 weapons that are better than your pistol in every way.

This is why I don't really get people that do shotgun/melee builds as well, the shotguns are objectively better. Unless you're doing Bru Bru Ber Bru TaN and the shotguns are only there for support, but then you've got too much Bru to get Aggregator in time.

The only weapons that can currently do a lot of damage without being heavily specialised are combat shotguns, rocket launchers, the BFG(s) and maybe rapidfire weapons, so these weapons are what a general trait must be based on.

That's why I changed up the traits a bit. While Eagle Eye doesn't help the combat shotgun or BFG, it does at least make rapidfire weapons slightly viable for anyone that wants to build this up with their chaingun. Also, shotgunners normally get one level of EE/an agility mod for their rocket launcher anyway.
« Last Edit: October 16, 2010, 01:26 by Thomas »
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Sylph

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Re: New trait suggestion - Aggregator
« Reply #6 on: October 16, 2010, 07:04 »

I'm not basing this trait on the idea that a character can be at a crossroads for their build. In fact, forcing a player into SOAB + brute + juggler kinda forces a player to 'lock in' to a 'jack of all trades' build, and it's *that* that encourages variety, more than the instant-inventory effect does.

I accept that it's a very poor choice for pistol and melee builds, because it's focused on an 'all round' build, not a primarily pistol or melee build.

You don't really need 3 levels of brute to have melee weapons be a viable selection. You need 2 levels of brute and berserker. Particularly in nightmare difficulty, where the knockback effect of a shotgun prevents you from killing a target while he stands on a doorframe, and the berserker effect is so easy to proc on a regenerating corpse. Berserker is 2 traits away from an aggregator in it's current form, which isn't really asking much. Vampyre is 5 traits away, which I feel is slightly too many to be of any use in an AOB run, but a reasonable target for someone who wants to incorporate awesome melee into their all-round character.

Pistols don't need to be high damage dealers to be useful to an all-round build. With juggler and finesse, just basic pistols are highly useful for attacking an approaching target even without any levels of SOAG or EE. They deal perhaps 30% damage to an approaching hellknight/cacodemon/baron, while saving 5 shells in a combat shotgun, and a shot of a double, for the moment when the target is close enough to start a knockback trap, not to mention melee to finish him off in a doorframe when he's 'almost dead'.

Oh, and I'd disagree about shotgunners getting a level of EE for their rocket launcher. Before the latest version, sure, I completely agree. Now that the missile launcher is a gauranteed drop in 'the wall', though, wasting a trait on EE makes no sense whatsoever, and even the agility mod is questionable - it's better used on boots and pistols, where it will be useful for the entire game, not just the easy pre-archvile stages before the character has a missile launcher.


Don't get me wrong, I think EE is a nice way of encouraging various weapon usage, I'm just concerned that it's not of interest to a player that picks a few levels of SOAG or brute, and kinda encourages chainguns, which are detrimental to a build that wants to use it's inventory spaces wisely, because it's clogged so many of them with different weapon options, and gains more benefit from medipacks and armour due to the aggregator ability.

I'm hoping for a few more opinions in this thread before modifying the traits required and blocked. I'm just scared that dropping SOAG and brute for eagle eye will change this from 'jack of all trades' to 'generic shotgun+chaingun', and lose all the potential for melee and pistols.


Cheers for your feedback anyway Thomas. Always nice to collect more opinions, so we can flesh the idea out and hopefully get a nice community suggestion to solve the lack of un-specialised master traits.
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Re: New trait suggestion - Aggregator
« Reply #7 on: October 19, 2010, 13:17 »

Some of the marines back at UAC just don't appreciate a well-tidied backpack. The advantages are obvious: Using items or swapping any equipment is totally instantaneous!
Looking at the benefit alone, I can't say it's all that appealing. At best, it's something I would aim for on, say, Pacifism Diamond, since HR is out of the question and TaN/Bad doesn't help very much. Being able to instantly use med packs or equip armor is going to help when you've already managed to become cornered which, if you're experienced (and just a liiiitle bit lucky) should not become an actual problem. This will have uses in Arach caves, Arenas, and some really bad level starts, but otherwise would only be useful as a means to lower your turn count.

Furthermore, the spattering of traits prevents the possibility of honing in on a particular weapon or strategy, which is useless to players trying to get their feet wet. When a newbie enters the game and begins to understand what they need to do in order to progress successfully, they often learn that the best strategy is a focused one. Ammochain and Cateye really make chainguns and plasma rifles shred through enemies. Army of the Dead makes shotguns useful in the endgame. Fireangel allows you to run around without fear from splash damage (to get you close with your double shotgun). Gun Kata removes reloading from the pistol equation for a very fast slaughter and aids constant dodging against the more deadly volleyers. Vampyre supports you with constant healing and Blademaster allows you to keep avoiding enemy fire, as you rip into the monster flesh. Aggregator...makes it convenient to heal or armor up during an open battle, with whatever build you happen to be using. Maybe it's just me, but I do not see myself using this in a serious game.

This isn't to say that an all-weapon master trait can't be done, but it should probably revolve more around weapons than protection. Consider a benefit that, say, rewards you for having different kinds of weapons in your inventory, or allows you to detect all equipment (weapons, armor, consumables, ammo) on the map. It could increase the chance for exotics and uniques to appear, or perhaps guarantee a unique upon getting the trait. There could be a Backpack-like effect (lets you hold more ammo and double-up on your consumables) or simply make any weapons in the inventory not count toward the carrying limit. Individually these aren't large, but some combination would be useful without being overpowered.

To me, the master trait you're suggesting would require a different basic and advanced trait altogether, two that affect the inventory and items stored within or, more generally, any item at all. Small med packs/healing globes would function as large ones, phase devices would be given the choice to act as homing, zerk/invul duration increases, small Backpack-like bonuses, reduced time to pick up/drop, levers are less or never dangerous, extra uses out of mods, halve armor degradation...plenty of possibilities to choose from.

As for the trait possibilities, EE is useful for any weapon that isn't a shotgun. Pistols at +6 are actually a lot more reliable than at +4 (I would know having played with pistols long enough) and melee is equally affected, which means you can use the chainsaw without even taking Brute. Son of a Bitch is also a very general trait since it affects every attack, and since TH is blocked you can't get quite as much use out of rapid-fire. It's true that these two may influence you to pick a rapid-fire weapon, but it's the choice of the player to think that only those weapons are best in such a case.
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Re: New trait suggestion - Aggregator
« Reply #8 on: October 19, 2010, 17:18 »

I agree with pretty much everything you've said, but

Looking at the benefit alone, I can't say it's all that appealing. At best, it's something I would aim for on, say, Pacifism Diamond, since HR is out of the question and TaN/Bad doesn't help very much. Being able to instantly use med packs or equip armor is going to help when you've already managed to become cornered which, if you're experienced (and just a liiiitle bit lucky) should not become an actual problem. This will have uses in Arach caves, Arenas, and some really bad level starts, but otherwise would only be useful as a means to lower your turn count.

Saving you from arenas and caves is a benefit that cannot be overestimated and it has three other effects that are a bit less situational:
1. If you enter a really bad fight in your walking-around armour, you can instantaneously switch to your serious armour
2. Medpacks heal you more efficiently. All medpack usage is done mid-fight, so the health you'll save by not getting shot on your healing turn will add up.
3. Juggler, but now you can also swap to your missile launcher.

As for its 6 buildup traits, the ones I suggested are a decent combat shotgun/rocket launcher build. You carry around several rocket launchers for a psuedo-missile-launcher, and the Fin/Rel combo helps both of your main weapons a fair bit.



I especially agree with the part that any trait that would encourage people to use many weapons would have to be offensively oriented. This one doesn't give very many offensive bonuses at all, which is why it relies on weapons that are already good without traits like the combat shotgun and rocket launcher.
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