Quiver - The Archer's First Step of Innovation

Suggestion

  • The quiver window keybind will be changed from ‘Q’ to ‘c’.

  • All brand on ranged weapons will be removed.

  • Ammo boxes will drop. Like spell books, ammo boxes are consumed immediately upon acquisition. The list of ammo boxes is as follows (provisional names are given for easy recognition):

    • Tier 1: ‘normal arrow’ box
    • Tier 2:Throw flame’ box, ‘Throw Icicle’ box, ‘infusion’ box
    • Tier 3:bolt of fire’ box, ‘bolt of cold’ box, ‘poison arrow’ box, ‘force lance’ box
    • Tier 4:bolt of divine’ box (TSO’s gift), ‘haste arrow’ box(just attack speed), ‘iron shot’ box
  • An ammo box is not the same old ammo. Bolts are infinite and do not take up inventory space. Ammo is just a tentative name. I’m also considering images like rune words engraved on weapons or poison vials for arrowheads.

  • If a ranged weapon is equipped, you can select ammo from the quiver window. You can choose ‘normal’ even if you have not acquired anything.

  • Fixed artifact weapons either have special ammo (e.g., damnation) or retain their existing brand.

  • Ammunition will have an additional attack speed value. The higher the tier, the slower the attack speed (Tier 4 could be around 10 seconds). Dexterity and ‘assembly skill’ reduce the additional attack speed value caused by ammo. The higher the tier, the higher the minimum value (excluding haste). For example, the minimum additional attack speed value for ‘bolt of fire’ is 1.0 (adds 1 more second), while for ‘haste’ it is -0.3.

  • The ammunition is based on straight-line spells that were removed a long time ago. Spell power is affected by the current damage of the weapon.

  • Adding an assembly skill. Bullets are influenced by the assembly skill and dexterity. Therefore, players can consider high-damage weapons with low-quality bullets, or low-tier weapons with high-quality bullets, depending on the current situation.

Introduction
Roguelike games actively encourage multiple playthroughs, but familiarity and monotony can be the bane of all roguelike games. Dungeon Crawl has sought to avoid stale and repetitive experiences by creating unfamiliar and interesting situations within its procedural generation system. For this reason, it has created a variety of gods, a wide range of sub-dungeon objectives, and replaced mundane arrow spells with creative and unique magic.

The job archetypes are also part of this philosophy. Dungeon Crawl has provided players with dozens of archetypes, from axe-wielding heavy armor warriors to bare-handed shapeshifters, elemental destruction mages, and necromancers. Weapons, armor, skills, and magic are all distinctive, and players can focus on a single skill or mix different skills to create thousands of archetypes tailored to procedurally generated dungeons. This resists the boredom of repetitive play.

However, some archetypes are similar to others, which is acceptable. Axe heavy armor warriors and hammer heavy armor warriors are intuitively similar. In fact, an electric destruction mage should be closer to a fire destruction mage than to a shapeshifting bare-handed warrior. Archetypes that should be similar can provide a similar gaming experience, which is what players expect.

Yet, two archetypes that should not be similar have been neglected: the archer and the warrior. Until version 0.29, it was fine for archers’ ranged weapons to be influenced by strength, making the two jobs quite similar. However, in 0.29, ranged weapon damage became influenced by dexterity, and a ranged rework introduced severe penalties for heavy armor, separating the two jobs in terms of items and stats, yet the play experience remains similar. Despite three additional patches, little has changed.

Let’s examine the similarities: both primarily use physical attacks and highly value the slay stat. They use weapons with attack power, attack speed, and accuracy as their main armament. Weapons can be two-handed or one-handed, and can be enhanced with enchantment scrolls and imbued with properties through branding scrolls. They share properties like antimagic, chaos, electricity, vampirism, frost, holy flame, speed, and heaviness. The main tactic for both is to use the ‘tab’ key to eliminate enemies, and the experience of using throwing weapons as a warrior is similar, except for the picking up part. Even at close range, continuously pressing the attack button is not much different for an archer than for a warrior.

Some may argue that the two are not similar, but comparing a warrior to a mage clearly shows what dissimilarity means. Spellbooks, spells, memorization, spell success rates, elemental staves, intelligence potions, mana consumption—the list goes on. This is what being dissimilar means.

The bigger issue is that many players think dexterity is different from strength because it allows for easier use of magic. However, considering Dungeon Crawl’s development philosophy of eliminating monotony, this is a great misconception. One must consider a newbie who, after experiencing both the warrior and the mage and finding them monotonous, decides to play as a dexterity archer. "I’ve tried magic, I’ve worn heavy armor, now it’s time to try a dexterity archer! Oh! I shoot from a distance? Infinite ammo, right? Wow, I can even use hex magic? -One hour later- o z a z b tab tab tab)

If you peel off the ‘dexterity archer’ post-it note… you’ll find it’s just ‘lots of strength, a bit of intelligence.’ In version 0.29, the archer declared independence from strength and moved to dexterity. But the life of an archer is still the same as that of strength. Independence means leaving your parents’ home and living a strange life. The experience of dexterity should also be strange. Dexterity must truly become independent from strength.

Objective
The archer’s meticulous playstyle has been considered. An archer is a being who holds the initiative to attack from a distance, assessing the situation before striking strategically, unlike a warrior who charges in blindly.

Therefore, the archer is a more strategic entity than the warrior. But does the turn spent switching weapons encourage strategic choice? (The homogenization of ranged weapons even reduces the strategic value of switching.) The existing quiver system is used to eliminate the time for switching.

Strategic options have been brought back from old code. It may have been mundane for magic, but for archers, it’s revolutionary. Even if archers take a few more beam-type spells, it’s okay because mages have many innovative ideas, including AoE, smite, buffs, debuffs, etc.

Archers must also have a resource. Typically, resources are health and mana, which were symbolic resources for warriors and mages. For archers, the resource is time. If unskilled, they must use extremely slow ammunition, requiring attacks from tactical positions, which is a good way to check the advantage of range. It also becomes a severe penalty at close range. (That’s why archers always need to look for haste arrows.)

The keyboard experience is also distinctive. Free from magic keys like ‘M’ or ‘z’, archers have a keyboard experience that requires pressing ‘c’ more often than others.

The play experience has become distinctive as well. Infinite straight-line magic ammunition, which uses time as its only resource, is an experience unavailable to both mages and warriors.

That’s all for now. Thank you for reading. I have always used a translator, but the quality of the translation was so terrible that I switched to ChatGPT. However, the translation is still unstable, so I prefer to post the original text.(update - i think its meaningless so i delete original)

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Skill rework is also important. a single skill with the worst aptitude offers a very linear experience for its archetype. In fact, it feels more like an encouragement to rely on armor or magic. This is because there are no skillful and diverse choices for the bow itself. To uphold the ideological declaration of stat independence, administrative practicalities like skills must also evolve. Like other stats, skills should become diverse with several aptitudes of varying proficiency.

Skills are sensitive and complex. Which skills will be favored and which will be neglected? By balancing these sensitive skills, we can experience countless different play styles even with the same stat allocation. This adds more detail to a single archetype. For instance, even within the same mage class, the early to mid-game experiences of a fire mage and an ice mage differ. Similar but subtly different experiences need to be provided. Additionally, pure archers who focus only on dexterity need to be separated from hybrid archetypes like armor archers and magic archers.

Therefore, skills will be separated. They must be separated to the extent that pure dexterity builds don’t have experience points left to invest in armor or magic, and to ensure complex and diverse gameplay even within pure dexterity.

the draft is as follows

  • Ranged Weapon Skills: All aptitudes are increased by +2~+3. This is considered a correction due to skill separation.
  • Arrow Skills: (throw, infusion, haste). At optimization, the additional attack speed ranges from 0 to 0.2. (Haste actually decreases, making it a dream for arrow play.)
  • Bolt Skills: These are area-of-effect skills (bolt-type).
  • Bullet Skills: These are powerful single-target skills or guarantee special effects. (A-shot, force lance, poison arrow.)

How should skills be separated? They can be divided by tactics like warriors or by play experience like mages. I think they should be intuitively grouped by projectile type. There is a concern that other archetypes might selectively use tactics. For example, a warrior might pull out a crossbow bolt as a trump card. However, I think there’s a charm in observing this, so i keep going.

next is item. we know that in Crawl, there are moments when you have to choose awkward, troublesome, and completely unplanned options due to procedural generation. We understand that archers should experience this as well. Moments when you see only unwanted books and have to change your school of magic, or when you find an artifact weapon of a type you haven’t trained in and consider switching. Archers should face similar temptations from closely related archetypes.

However, I think ten types might be somewhat insufficient. If they are all easy to obtain, they lose their significance, and if none can be obtained, it becomes frustrating to the point of wanting to quit. in fact, having a maximum of four items per skill feels somewhat insufficient. For now, let’s try to expand it a bit.

Therefore, we will assign grades to bullet boxes, ranging from 1 to 5. Higher grades require higher skill levels. Players can choose whether to use lower-grade or higher-grade bullet boxes by picking them up and activating them. This seems more similar to talismans than spellbooks. Now, we can imagine players considering switching to another bullet skill after seeing high-grade, high-performance bullets.

However, finding 10*5 bullets in the dungeon is harsh and risks turning the dungeon into a messy bullet dump. So, we will change bullet boxes to gears. Players will find gear boxes containing gears. When picked up, gear boxes disappear immediately, leaving three gears underfoot. Gears function like talismans and modify the equipped bullets in the quiver.

Of course, tiers still exist. We won’t see low-level players carrying haste gear. Tier is different from grade. Lower-tier gears are efficient at lower grades, while higher-tier gears are efficient at higher grades. Efficiency here means criteria like minimum additional attack speed, maximum attack speed penalty, and damage that are better than linear progression. Therefore, a grade 1 haste gear has poor damage efficiency. (Should we apply enhancement scrolls to bullets as well?)

  • Ranged Weapons: Determine attack speed and spell power like staves.
  • Bullet Grade: Determines the qualitative performance of bullets.like spell level
  • Bullet Skills: Determines the attack speed of bullets.

I will tidy this up later.

Could it be because they restored old arrow magic? Suddenly, it occurred to me that it feels like Magic MK.2. It’s like a wizard who uses time as a resource instead of mana. The particularly strong reason why it feels like Magic MK.2 is the structure similar to the staff-magic level-school skill in weapons-grade-skill.

Just as the gameplay of a warrior and a wizard is very different, an archer should be very different from both a wizard and a warrior. This should align with the game’s values and perspective. Therefore, new archer system should ‘create’ new values within the game.

Perhaps we might need to create new projectiles. Though a bit rough, something like a Northland Arrow comes to mind—a type of attack that deals higher damage the lower the enemy’s y-coordinate is compared to the character. This would make players more sensitive to their current position.

Maybe it’s okay to give archers these seemingly useless attacks that wizards wouldn’t memorize if they were spells. These may be considered trash attacks, but since they don’t use mana, they are free from mana efficiency issues and memorization problems. Therefore, if combining these ‘trash’ attacks tactically becomes the archer’s value system, wouldn’t the gameplay be quite different from that of a wizard? Wizards are designed to be highly efficient at higher levels. This is something to keep thinking about, but since it’s a counterargument to the main topic, I’m writing it here.

Another trash arrow idea
1-turn barb arrow- Guaranteed hit. It applies a weak barb for 1 turn. Thus, the enemy must move a lot within a short period after being hit to receive normal damage.

is this stab? lol arrow - no damage if awake. very very little damage if sleep. no sound arrow.

‘confident that they won’t wake up after 5 turns’ shot - high damge if sleep. but it have so many many additional attack speed. and no damage if awake. so have to aim still in front of the enemy for 5 turns.

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Upon deeper reflection, a certain concept comes to mind. Typically, while magic targets an opponent’s inherent attributes, dexterity-based classes, including assassins, tend to exploit the opponent’s situation. If magic checks and targets resistances, AC (Armor Class), and EV (Evasion), dexterity-based classes exploit the opponent’s circumstances. How about expanding on this concept?

Magic Aftermath Arrow - Delivers a critical strike if the target has just used magic (though this might be tricky to implement).
lonerrow - If his comrades are not around the enemy, it will cause a little higher damage.