Little Rogue: A thread about Roguelikes, there will be Rogues, like, innit.
  • Did Dark Souls have anything to do with this rogue thing?
    "Plus he wore shorts like a total cunt" - Bob
  • Did Dark Souls have anything to do with this rogue thing?

    Rogue is super old school innit. DS I guess shares some design philosophy in there, but not part of genre.
    I'm still great and you still love it.
  • Sorry, that innit was an actual question.
    I'm still great and you still love it.
  • Kow
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    I remember playing the original Rogue at uni. I wasted a lot of time on it. And Rogue. Random levels and creatures that move as you do. It was a very unfair but compulsive game, with no graphics at all, just ascii characters.
  • Kow
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    Looking at Face's list, it seems I like Roguealikes too.
  • Excellent joke.
    I'm still great and you still love it.
  • Ffs
    I'm still great and you still love it.
  • They're primarily made by small devs. Crackdown has MS backing and millions flung at it.

    Pretend that instead of '2D Metroidvania on 360 maybe?' I'd remembered that the other game I was on about was Dust: An Elysian Tail (that game made by a team of one).  

    I'll stop dreaming though, which is a shame as it means I'll never bother with something like Finthook, which for me would have so much going for it without the rogue elements.
    Joustus is served.
  • It took the dev of Dust over 3 years to make Elysian Tail! And rejigging a demo isn't re-balancing a whole game for a different style of play.
  • Are the Chalice dungeons of Bloodborne kinda roguelike? I didn’t mind them. Still need to get to the end of the non-random ones and fight the Pthumerian Queen.
    I am a FREE. I am not MAN. A NUMBER.
  • Paul the sparky
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    Facewon wrote:
    A more straight ahead SF fps is on my Wishlist.

    Destiny 2 flirted with Rogue like in one of the dlcs, didn't it, but it was shit.

    Was it you that got into the permadeath mode in The Division?
  • Oh yeah. Great shout.

    That was amazing. I should revisit that. Hope they have similar in 2.

    Really fucking good.
    I'm still great and you still love it.
  • Tempy wrote:
    Arcade games don't just work because they aren't randomised, they work because time and care is taken to arrange obstacles and enemies and concepts in logical chunks that teach you how to deal with them.  The reason a lot of devs might prefer the proc-gen route is because it's tool based rather than design based, disciplines that are very different.

    Good Rouguelikes seem to work because time and care is taken to arrange the randomisation so that it generates logical chunks that the player can deal with (the foundation of it all being the tight controls).  That's where the honing and EA stuff comes in, is that right?  The feedback is used to focus the way the game randomises its elements?  So the 'arcade experience' is deep in the dna of the genre - to me, the player movement and ability to deal with any given situation is why these games still appeal despite not liking the way they ask you to work towards your goal.  The tools based vs design based thing is a key here as I'll always prefer the latter, but the best in class from both genres give the player similar tools to tackle their stages in the shape of ultra responsive characters (look away now, Rogue Legacy).  Forget the arcade mode pipe dream, I've struck it from the wishlist, but I'm still envious of the rogues because of their arcade core.
    Joustus is served.
  • EA helps with balancing yep, but with a randomisation of levels, enemies and items, you can also aim to have a Roguelike with 6 levels and release the first 3 into EA whilst working on the latter 3. Dead Cells spent months adding items, paths, enemies and so on, and also completely redesigning progression elements. Slay the Spire launched with 2 characters, and a third was added quite a lot later, with new enemies and encounters being added even later. The replayability and lack of a "finished" state for the player means it fits EA well. Can you imagine enjoying an arcade game if it came out in EA with half its levels, then after a year it had all of them but the core mechanic had changed? Which is why they tend to stick to Kickstarter, so they can earn the money in advance and spend their time developing a more cohesive whole. I'm repeating myself now though.
  • WorKid wrote:
    What's that one where you wake up on an island and need to not die? I enjoyed that for a while.

    Don't Starve
  • Nina
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    Was looking forward to posting a screen from my best Isaac run tonight but the best run was the first one and I didn't screen it. I'm feeling more frustrated than I need to right now, Isaac keeps doing that to me. Love it though.

    May need to invest in pc Slay the Spire, since there's another thread with a weekly going on. Can you just jump into that without knowing much?

    And the Moot / Tempy discussion, had a little talk about it with B. He's in Moot's camp, still bitter that Dead Cells didn't work for him, and he wished it had a more linear mode too. He thinks it shouldn't cost that much more dev time, getting a good random is one of the harder things to do, so if you have that, creating a fixed run from a to b shouldn't be too hard. I can see that this is something devs don't want to do if they're making a Rogue like thought, it's not what we're making. Getting item synergy, interesting generated layouts etc have a higher priority.
    I mean, you can find more planned levels in Isaac. There's of course the seed # that can be shared, so people (and the dev) could share the most fun, over powered, challenging etc runs that they encounter. This would be something that would grow over time, but you do have runs you can do over and over that will be the same.
    Isaac also has the challenges of course (not talking weekly, haven't looked at those), but in those the items you start with and the number of floors are set. Rooms on each floor, enemies and items will change every run, but I don't see why those couldn't be optional. A "no spiders" button would be very welcome at times because I just can't deal with their pattern when I'm tired.

    One of the advantages of procedural generated is that you as a developer set the rules. You will always need the start and end room of a floor, and everything in between those is random. X amount of treasure rooms, only rooms bigger than 4 squares, sub bosses are all in dice throws, but that doesn't necessarily mean you can't set those.
    I watched a video not too long ago about the generated levels in Spelunky, will see if I can find that again if people want to watch it.
  • I just don't see how Dead Cells would work if it was a single linear play through. It's all about trying different set ups on different runs and seeing how well they work.

    If you play through it once you'll only see a fraction of the stuff on offer. There's no room for all the weapons and items in one predefined run. Also all the abilities you unlock are based on the idea of starting again and trying a new route, so you can't see everything in one go.

    And what if, say, you get to the first boss and you don't have a good set up to deal with it? You won't want to be reloading a save point and trying to force through it. You'll want to start again and find different stuff this time round. In other words have some random factor that will generate alternative options.

    My issue with Dead Cells in the end was that it wasn't random enough. Each run felt too similar because the level layouts were made up of predefined blocks. So it really wouldn't work as a static game that you played through repeatedly either. It's too repetitive for that.

    Anyway, that's one example where a major redesign would be necessary to get a linear structure working. And simply offering a fixed set of the procedurally generated levels would just make no sense.
  • I appreciate Bas probably knows more about coding time and so on, but I think you hit the crux of my argument on the head when you said they’re not designing a non-rogue, they’re designing a rogue. Any time out of the latter is the opposite of what they’re aiming to achieve.
  • We've got some pretty good mileage out of my initial pie in the sky thing.  Hopefully I've got another post or two in me before I start to become too irritating.  One you say?  Ah.  Most of the counter arguments are strong and better informed than mine, but...
    JonB wrote:
    If you play through it once you'll only see a fraction of the stuff on offer.

    ...is both correct and also not something that would bother me.  Done in two hours, cut out the water magic or whatever (joke!  I'm sure it has no equivalent because live testing) - that would be preferable to missing out completely.  My fomo itch would've been scratched.  I'm not suggesting it would be worth anyone's while to add such a mode, I'm just saying I'd be all over it if they did.
    Joustus is served.
  • It's not annoying, it's an interesting point because I personally can't see how an arcade mode adds anything that isn't already in the rogue design. Many of the derivatives of Rogue are rooted in oldschool arcade design philosophy, but they're more rewarding because instead of punting you back to the start of the same set of 6 levels with the exact same items and placements. And if you want to scratch that itch, you can basically already do it by just playing an roguelike and accepting that the stuff that comes from discovering unlocks won't happen. There are a bunch of them you can feasibly finish on your first run really.
  • Moot_Geeza wrote:
    We've got some pretty good mileage out of my initial pie in the sky thing.  Hopefully I've got another post or two in me before I start to become too irritating.  One you say?  Ah.  Most of the counter arguments are strong and better informed than mine, but...
    If you play through it once you'll only see a fraction of the stuff on offer.
    ...is both correct and also not something that would bother me.  Done in two hours, cut out the water magic or whatever (joke!  I'm sure it has no equivalent because live testing) - that would be preferable to missing out completely.  My fomo itch would've been scratched.  I'm not suggesting it would be worth anyone's while to add such a mode, I'm just saying I'd be all over it if they did.
    I don't think you can just extract that quote without taking on board the other stuff around it though. I also think if they did take time to make such a mode it would likely be not very good compared to other games that were designed for a single play through from the ground up. Dead Cells or Spelunky or whatever would be very underwhelming unless you started to understand the different possibilities they offer from long term play.

    But, if you do want something that can stand up on a single play through yet keep adding more if you continue playing, then Invisible Inc is the one again. You'll start on Beginner and probably get all the way through it first time. You could stop there, albeit with only a rough idea of how it really works.
  • Just my 2p

    Civ is all about proc gen and emergent behaviour. But I do like the scenarios too. I can't see why you can't have both. Won't work for all games I grant you, and isn't a perfect analogue neither.
  • I can’t see the point in a crafted version of a rogue like.

    The whole point is to keep wonking things up to the point where your skills are flexible enough that you can win games based mostly on your skills (and luck).

    I’d hate it if there was a thing in the product spelunky that was given some status as “complete this bespoke challenge” and you can say you have beaten spelunky. For one thing the whole thing is about uncrafted physics jokes. For another it misses the entire point.

    I know this will be controversial but there was this thing about the recent Pokemon where there were a lot of comments about the lack of options with the ball throwing mechanic. There was a lot of justified anger that it was inaccessible to a lot of people. But I can also sympathise with the view by the developers that by putting something in that removed the necessity to use motion would have meant that it would have been the first option many many many players would have turned off - which would have been against the kind of experience they wanted to give.

    I want the best versions of the things that fulfill the visions of what developers want to make and to my mind that means focussing more on honing around what is good rather than spreading out to create a checkabox product.
  • I've always subscribed to the more options = better school of thought. If Colgate the Viking had a bolted on rogue mode I wouldn't even consider hating it, I just wouldn't bother playing it, which is essentially the flip side of what we're talking about.
    Joustus is served.
  • Colgate the Viking can stay.
    Joustus is served.
  • WorKid wrote:
    Just my 2p Civ is all about proc gen and emergent behaviour. But I do like the scenarios too. I can't see why you can't have both. Won't work for all games I grant you, and isn't a perfect analogue neither.

    But plenty of turn based rogues do offer scenarios. I've been strictly talking about the ones that draw from what Moot calls an Arcade school of design. Even Isaac offers individual scenarios, but it's still not a direct comparison to wanting a one and done playthrough mode, because the scenarios in Isaac can only exist by the wealth of options available to you in Isaac - there are 34 different challenges in Isaac, added over years, and none of them really work like the mode Moot is suggesting, which is sort of putting a square peg into a round hole.

    Essentially a Scenario isn't really a decent analogue here, a closer comparison would be an RTS style campaign in the Civ engine where you play as the US all the way through, the AI decisions are fixed, and there's no deviation for any player.

    Take Slay the Spire as an example cos I just played a few games of it. There's no way that game can be made into a fun one and done experience. It just isn't possible, because it's designed to be a deck builder rogulike with replayabilty. The only way you can enjoy it is by replaying it. If it was the exact same route each time, with the same cards then... well, what's the point?

    Even then you could use a custom seed, like you can in most roguelikes, to ensure the options, levels, enemies and so on are exactly the same every run, but it's still no arcade playthrough.
  • Moot_Geeza wrote:
    I've always subscribed to the more options = better school of thought. If Colgate the Viking had a bolted on rogue mode I wouldn't even consider hating it, I just wouldn't bother playing it, which is essentially the flip side of what we're talking about.

    Does the Mona Lisa need a toaster?
  • Whilst I was a fair defender of Single Player games in the 360 gen getting Multiplayer modes (generally cos they were worked on by different studios) because it was the shameful baggage Publishers had saddled them with, streamlined and focused design is always much, much better for the player and the developer. 

    My GotY list on this should be telling, only one of them is baggy and undefined, and it's God of War. It'd benefit massively from increased focus, like all the other games in my list did.

    Would Thumper be better with a randomised mode added on? Not really, it'd be a thing to have, but there's no point in having it when 9 incredibly tightly designed levels are there.

    The more I think about this as well the more it becomes obvious to me that Seeded runs or Daily/Weekly Challenges are already a thing in Roguelikes and basically fulfil what Moot wants. A fixed seed that you get a shot at, and it's always the same if you enter that same seed. It's not designed, and there's always a chance the seed is total bunk, but it's there.
  • Moot_Geeza wrote:
    I've always subscribed to the more options = better school of thought. If Colgate the Viking had a bolted on rogue mode I wouldn't even consider hating it, I just wouldn't bother playing it, which is essentially the flip side of what we're talking about.
    But there's a reason it doesn't have that, which is that it would be a half-arsed roguelike that wouldn't really please anyone. Or they'd have to put major time into developing it properly, and might as well call it a different game.

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