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Author Topic: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack  (Read 8245 times)

Melon

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Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« on: July 22, 2012, 10:27 »

Anyone played Nethack? There's a "hidden" Sokoban like level: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8fQqWx4ORaA

I was wondering if such could be implemented in DoomRL but in a way to retain the climate of gore
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skarczew

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2012, 11:26 »

Every Hell level with too many barrels is like Sokoban.
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #2 on: July 23, 2012, 08:11 »

Hmm... a Sokoban-style variant of the Unholy Cathedral might be interesting.
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #3 on: July 24, 2012, 02:49 »

Hmm, and what would you do in this Sokoban Cathedral?
The thing is, it needs to resemble oryginal Sokoban game (pushing boxes into certain positions).
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #4 on: July 24, 2012, 03:14 »

The only way I could see a Sokoban element working even in a hidden level would be to have the items that need to be moved around as enemies which you knock back with your melee attacks - hence UC would be perfect for it.

What I mean is: You cannot damage the enemy with your attacks, but you can be damaged (a small amount) by a melee attack from it. The creatures have a very slow move speed, and a somewhat higher attack speed (they will nearly always get a swing at you, but won't run after you too quickly). Imagine a maze style complex where you need to knock these creatures back into, well, let's use teleporters since they're already in there. Each teleporter disappears once used by the creature and has a static output...if you're that creature.
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skarczew

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #5 on: July 24, 2012, 15:33 »

I have been thinking about the other thing:

The item that should be moved are the barrels. Once all of the barrels are in positions, they should change into ...Cacodemons.
There were lots of times when I mistook a flying ball for a barrel, which resulted in a non-nuclear level clusterfuck.
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #6 on: July 24, 2012, 18:17 »

There were lots of times when I mistook a flying ball for a barrel, which resulted in a non-nuclear level clusterfuck.
oh man the amount of times i've mistaken enemies for barrels
"No! Bad barrel! Stop spawning lost souls!"
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skarczew

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #7 on: July 25, 2012, 02:49 »

Well, Pain Elementals are no problem once they spawn souls ;) .
But Cacos ... I later changed color for them, only to discover that Agony got the same. Meh =) .
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Melon

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #8 on: July 26, 2012, 01:21 »

How about: you have to push barrels of napalm into place. They cannot be destroyed, but if they get hit they spill lava all over the place. You have to push the barrels quickly into right place, otherwise you'll get flooded with lost souls (or other monsters on higher difficulty level) which spawn from time to time. Developer has to make sure, that monsters are spawned in a way, that will not prevent the hero from moving barrels into correct place. You don't get xp for the monsters!

This would be a good challenge for berserker. You can enter as a regular character but you'll have to watch not to damage the barrels during the carnage, otherwise you'll have to push barrels into lava.

Now what's next. Fight with another boss of doom? Or you can reward for completing the level?

Also, as this level is sort of a prank, it shouldn't appear very often. Only 1 out of 20 games? And it should be somewhere in Hell, so it also would make discovery of that level very rare.
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skarczew

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #9 on: July 27, 2012, 04:08 »

How about: you have to push barrels of napalm into place. They cannot be destroyed, but if they get hit they spill lava all over the place. You have to push the barrels quickly into right place, otherwise you'll get flooded with lost souls (or other monsters on higher difficulty level) which spawn from time to time. Developer has to make sure, that monsters are spawned in a way, that will not prevent the hero from moving barrels into correct place. You don't get xp for the monsters!

This would be a good challenge for berserker. You can enter as a regular character but you'll have to watch not to damage the barrels during the carnage, otherwise you'll have to push barrels into lava.

Now what's next. Fight with another boss of doom? Or you can reward for completing the level?

Also, as this level is sort of a prank, it shouldn't appear very often. Only 1 out of 20 games? And it should be somewhere in Hell, so it also would make discovery of that level very rare.
I think that Lava Barrels are not very sokobanish. The Sokoban itself had a very narrow corridors, and lava/napalm would block the passages instantly.
The beauty of the game was to find a solution for a puzzle, not to wreak havoc around.

Second thing I do not like is creating a level for Berserker only. The times when it was the most challenging thing in DoomRL have passed. No need for more buffs.

The way I see it is a modification of yer idea:
- a part of a level (something around vault size) could be a Sokoban puzzle. The area itself could be surrounded by water to prevent taking other barrels there;
- Sokoban puzzle should be inaccessible for monsters (dead stuff on ground could make puzzle insolvable); an indestructible wall (and an associated lever) could be decent protection;
- once a puzzle is solved (all barrels are in positions), the other special part of level (presumably surrounded with unbreakable wall) would become accessible;
- that other part of level could have another part of Sokoban puzzle, or some boss to fight with, or some reward, or stairs to a special level, etc;
- the level itself should have flavour text about Sokoban puzzle existance; e.g. "Somehow you feel an urge to push things...", "Somehow you feel an urge to have everything in its place...";

Some examples of Sokoban puzzles:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i_WmVBwEE4U (original game)
http://www.sourcecode.se/sokoban/levels.php
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #10 on: July 27, 2012, 08:07 »

One thing to consider is that unlike sokoban, you can push barrels diagonally, which gives the player more freedom, which in turn (at least I think) limits the possibilities for making interesting puzzles.
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skarczew

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #11 on: July 27, 2012, 09:14 »

@Klear:
You are totally right.

Maybe remove the possibility of diagonal movement while inside the Sokoban puzzle? :P
I am not sure how was this solved in Nethack, as I haven't played it.
« Last Edit: July 27, 2012, 14:57 by skarczew »
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Melon

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #12 on: July 30, 2012, 09:35 »

I would see it this way:
- This level should be easier for berserks. We only have one true berserker level.
- No diagonal movement!
- Lava barrels. If you shot, lava spurs out, sometimes blocking the puzzles. Tough luck! You still can exit the level normal way.
- Monsters get spawned if you stay too long. They are added to your "career" stats, but you don't get any experience from them. However, getting ammo from them is still possible.
- Barrels have to be put in right place. After this happens, some wall lowers/explodes/disappear revealing staircase to another level or encounter with a special enemy/mini-boss.
- As for the enemy I would imagine some great daemon that throws barrels at you or pieces of wall or corpses, whatever it has at his hands. If you get hit, you get pushed back, making it harder for you to reach it. This daemon is very slow, but can kill you in two hits. Yup! But if you are a fast berserker/dodger you can use the hit and run tactics. As for ranged weapons, it is heavily armored and it's hard to do any damage from range unless you hit its weak spot (bonus from Eagle Eye perhaps?)
- The reward? http://doom.wikia.com/wiki/Quietus
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Melon

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #14 on: August 06, 2012, 02:06 »

Or the Gauntlets of the Necromancer

Hm, we already have a chainsaw. Maybe it has the ability to heal the player? This however combined with Vampyrism might by "I win!" button. Still, I think a melee weapon from Hexen or Heretic would be sufficient. Perhaps a weapon from enemy: http://doom.wikia.com/wiki/Sabreclaw . This would grant you speed and greater damage but you would receive additional knockback
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skarczew

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #15 on: August 06, 2012, 05:38 »

Just why do you want to buff AoB? I don't like the mere idea of it.
If anything, the reward should suit all builds and challenges.
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Ander Hammer

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #16 on: August 06, 2012, 08:18 »

I would see it this way:
- This level should be easier for berserks. We only have one true berserker level.

'Berserkers', that is, marines presumably choosing at least a few melee traits, already have an entire string of special levels that benefit them specifically - Chained Court, Unholy Cathedral, and the Mortuary. 'Because they don't have enough' isn't a good enough reason on its own to give them something else.

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- No diagonal movement!

Why? What would the problem be? Nethack handles it well enough, and levels can be/are simply designed so that you can only move the rocks in the cardinal directions, anyway.

Quote
- Lava barrels. If you shot, lava spurs out, sometimes blocking the puzzles. Tough luck! You still can exit the level normal way.

Sokoban, at its heart, is not about combat. While DoomRL is, I honestly don't mind the idea of a special level that doesn't involve combat at all, like 100% of the rest of the game. Branching from that, my point: without combat, you wouldn't shoot any of the barrels. On the other hand, if there was fighting involved on this level, as can be the case in Nethack, this kind of random 'screw you' doesn't look good on a level's resume, similar to how you were once able to destroy the lever in Hell's Armory.

Quote
- As for the enemy I would imagine some great daemon that throws barrels at you or pieces of wall or corpses, whatever it has at his hands. If you get hit, you get pushed back, making it harder for you to reach it. This daemon is very slow, but can kill you in two hits. Yup! But if you are a fast berserker/dodger you can use the hit and run tactics. As for ranged weapons, it is heavily armored and it's hard to do any damage from range unless you hit its weak spot (bonus from Eagle Eye perhaps?)

'Moar damage' and 'moar armor' aren't particularly cerebral answers to the question 'how do we make this boss interesting and challenging?'. It seems to me that, after solving a brain teaser, an encounter with a 'boss' should be creative and inventive, not 'hur dur kill you in two hits while not taking damage'. (It could be argued that, after all of that thinking, Doomguy wants some action, but we already have several big, heavily-armored, highly-damaging enemies to fight... they're the reason you went to Hell in the first place.)


I plain don't like the idea of making it 'for berserkers', either. Since it's Nethack's Sokoban that spawned this idea, maybe one of its artifacts are given? A bag of holding, granting a few extra inventory slots, or an amulet of reflection... its original function would be absurdly overpowered in DoomRL, so change it to a percentage chance, and/or perhaps upon being hit by a projectile.
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Melon

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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #17 on: August 06, 2012, 08:56 »

1) What I meant for berserker is a level like Unholy Cathedral. This would be easier for berserker, since you won't damage the lava barrels by accident (if you use a pistol for example you might as well miss the target and shoot the barrel, sorry!).

2) As for no diagonal movement... Well, it's Sokoban, we don't have to copy everything from Nethack, right?

3) Yes, yes, yes. Lava barrels. If you start moving aimlessly, more monster will spawn tearing your health down. So it's a brain teaser, try to solve in as few moves as you can, not just by a random pushing of barrels around.

4) Hm. I have to agree, that the enemy would be a something more for brain teasing to make it unique
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #18 on: August 06, 2012, 14:00 »

I don't know how is that handled in nethack, but how do you prevent the level to be devoid of any challenge once you solve it and remember how you did it?
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #19 on: August 06, 2012, 19:23 »

Nethack had something of a time limit in the form of the nutrition system, as well as a few monsters to occasionally spice things up and ruin the level on rare occasions. There were only a few layouts, so once you figured them out (or spoiled them) then you just had to remember and it was sort of easy, unless you got an inconvenient monster. (This is somewhat comparable to figuring out a 'trick' for DoomRL's existing special levels, I guess.)

Melon, your argument hasn't changed. Your reasoning - a berserker won't accidentally shoot a barrel - is still essentially giving a berserker an advantage 'just because', in addition to saying 'haha, screw you' if bad luck strikes a normal marine, and god forbid you use a shotgun. Either way, making the stones into lava barrels screws everyone equally when one explodes while you're pushing it.

It would be fine (in fact, probably pretty aggravating) if you just plain had hard-to-destroy blocks to move while the occasional enemy spawned in over time, ensuring you aren't skipping through without using resources.
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #20 on: August 07, 2012, 02:59 »

Nethack had something of a time limit in the form of the nutrition system, as well as a few monsters to occasionally spice things up and ruin the level on rare occasions. There were only a few layouts, so once you figured them out (or spoiled them) then you just had to remember and it was sort of easy, unless you got an inconvenient monster. (This is somewhat comparable to figuring out a 'trick' for DoomRL's existing special levels, I guess.)

Melon, your argument hasn't changed. Your reasoning - a berserker won't accidentally shoot a barrel - is still essentially giving a berserker an advantage 'just because', in addition to saying 'haha, screw you' if bad luck strikes a normal marine, and god forbid you use a shotgun. Either way, making the stones into lava barrels screws everyone equally when one explodes while you're pushing it.

It would be fine (in fact, probably pretty aggravating) if you just plain had hard-to-destroy blocks to move while the occasional enemy spawned in over time, ensuring you aren't skipping through without using resources.

Like I said, I want this level to be easier for berserker, as there is only ONE true level for berserkers. And still, you can complete the level if you're a ranged fighter, you just have to be more careful, that's all. Hell isn't encrusted with flowers and gummy bears. And you wouldn't explode the barrel while being a berserker (there are still some exceptions though).

As for time management, a simple thing: wear down the players health from time to time. This can be explained by the toxic fumes that fill the level (we have such feature, with a diffirent name).
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #21 on: August 07, 2012, 03:54 »

Time limit doesn't make it any more difficult once you have it figured out, and besides, you should think ahead anyway in such puzzles, so unless you're speedrunning, I don't see that much of a bump in difficulty even on your first try...
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #22 on: August 07, 2012, 11:35 »

Like I said, I want this level to be easier for berserker, as there is only ONE true level for berserkers.
And there are ZERO true levels for non-berserkers. I WANT AoMr level only, with pistols as ONLY working weapons. Oh my, why aren't such levels there?

As for diagonal movement, make the boulders/stones (NOT barrels) movable only horizontally / vertically. Solved.
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #23 on: August 07, 2012, 16:14 »

It was me who suggested that the diagonal movement might make making of challenging puzzle difficult, but restricting player and/or barrel movement to cardinal directions doesn't sound too good to me either. It's unintuitive and there is no in-game reason for it.

Basically, as I now realize, I think this is a bad idea, so I'm throwing these un-suggestions out there to make it more difficult for you =)
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #24 on: August 08, 2012, 05:11 »

And there are ZERO true levels for non-berserkers. I WANT AoMr level only, with pistols as ONLY working weapons. Oh my, why aren't such levels there?

As for diagonal movement, make the boulders/stones (NOT barrels) movable only horizontally / vertically. Solved.

But this level is EASIER for BERSERKERS and not IMPOSSIBLE for AoMr.
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #25 on: August 08, 2012, 08:48 »

Stop making everything easier for berserkers. Stop caring about them. It is supposed (or was 2-3 years ago) to be VERY HARD.

As for diagonal Sokoban, I am against the idea. Diagonal Sokoban is not sokobanish at all.
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Re: Sokoban level - tribute to Nethack
« Reply #26 on: August 08, 2012, 09:22 »

As for diagonal Sokoban, I am against the idea. Diagonal Sokoban is not sokobanish at all.

There is one good thing it though: the thought that stuff can only be pushed in cardinal directions is so ingrained in me, that I was honestly surprised when I found out that it is possible to push the barrels diagonally as well. I think I even discovered that by accident. If the puzzle looked like it can be solved without diagonal movement but required it at some point, it could maybe throw some people off.

Other thing that might make it more interesting - doors. Closing doors and then shooting them open is a nice little trick when you need to move barrels around a level. Providing an alternative (though impossible) route is mandatory.
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