The iron giant points at the changelog and mumbles some strange words. The harpoon shot hits the changelog! The changelog is yanked forward by the harpoon shot.
Dungeon spelunkers, I’m back from Dis:7 with another Trunk Update. It’s looking like the 0.22 Release and Tournament will be during mid August. We’ll have a specific date and a preliminary tournament page in a future post, so stay tuned. Also, please try out trunk on your favorite server or play a downloadable trunk build in order to help us find bugs and play-test recent changes.
Let’s first talk about a couple major changes this release, starting with player ghost vaults. Player ghosts are a beloved yet infamous community feature. It’s amusing to run into a friend’s ghost, but sometimes you’re just not in the mood to fight another one of xXx420BlazeItxXx’s unkillable MiBe ghosts, you know? To help make fighting ghost monsters more of a fun risk/reward decision rather than a constant chore, all player ghosts have been locked up behind special loot vaults:
- Ghosts are always sealed in vaults that have runed doors or transporters.
- The ghost is always visible from outside the vault through clear walls. You can x-v the ghost beforehand to see what you’ll be going up against.
- Each level from Dungeon:3 onward has a fixed chance of placing a ghost vault in most connected branches. This chance is only 10% for each level, and you’ll only ever get one ghost vault per level. But beware that some vaults place multiple ghosts; one vault can even place up to 5 of them!
- Ghosts can now follow you through stairs. You knew we couldn’t resist buffing ghosts, right? Sorry, but if you open that runed door, the old ghost stair dance routine won’t save you any more.
- Dozens of new ghost vaults with a variety of themes. All contain loot, and many place other monsters with extra loot. We have a large and growing list of these made by devs and contributors alike. Here’s a sample of the more thematic ones:
- Gozag Ghost: A Gozag-themed vault that places heaps of gold, possibly some shops or potions, and some nasty monsters to help the ghost prevent anyone from making a heist.
- Hydra Chop: A vault showing what happens when you fight hydra with edged weapons. You’ll find a ghost and a nice, non-flaming edged weapon next to some hydra with more heads than usual. Kill the ghost and any 11(or 16)-headed hydra, and you might get that treasure the player was after.
- Orc Armoury: A vault that lets you try to raid an orc armory that’s filled with well-armed and determined orcs. The player ghost you’ll find inside apparently didn’t employ a good strategy. Beware, this vault is the top killer in trunk right now!
- Fury of Okawaru: A vault showing what happens when you abandon Oka but aren’t good enough to handle the fury of Okawaru’s wrath. Oka’s warrior monsters and a player ghost will do their utmost to keep you away from that pile of treasure.
- Potion Laboratory: A vault filled with eldritch and shapeshifting horrors made from a now-ghostly player’s failed experiments with potions. You’ll find some nice potions and equipment, but the mutagenic stuff inside might leave you a little…changed.
- Labyrinth Escape: A vault depicting a scene where a player tried to loot a labyrinth and escaped with the minotaur close behind. Sadly they ran right back into a bunch of monsters they juked to get into the lab in the first place. Now you get to fight the player’s ghost, those monsters, and the minotaur if you want any of that loot.
There are lots more ghost vaults for you to die to that I haven’t described here, and we’ll be adding more in coming weeks. We’ll also be tweaking the vault balance and possibly changing the way ghost stores are seeded for offline players.
Next up is the new spell library interface, a nice UI feature that also has some game-play ramifications. Tired of lugging around spell books or returning to a stash just to memorize a spell? Well, we’ve got some good news for you:
- Players have a global spell library. Spells from books are automatically added to the library when you pick up the book. The book is destroyed after you pick it up. Don’t worry, you got what you needed from it!
- Library spells can be memorized from anywhere through the ‘M’ screen. You can also use search filters on this screen, since those spell lists can get pretty long.
- Vehumet won’t offer you a spell you already have in your library. Seems obvious, but it’s nice when you consider how Veh was previously happy to waste those precious gifts on spells you already had lying around in a book somewhere.
- Trog no longer has a Burn Spellbook ability. It’s not really viable to make spellbooks as items for one god with this UI and….you know what, I’m going to drop a book bomb here….Trog is strong enough to take a nerf!
- Morgue and char dump files now show your entire spell library. Now you don’t have to guess what spells you had available when looking at those.
The spell library is part of a larger set of UI improvements that we’ve been rolling out over recent releases; there’s also an update for WebTiles chat described below. We have a revamp of the UI internals as well as some visual updates planned to roll out partly in this release and partly in 0.23. The UI revamp is mostly the work of our newest dev and UI guru, aidanholm. There’s a playable branch you can try out on CBRO if you’d like to help find any bugs.
Now let’s talk about the rest of the changes large and small that we’ve been hoarding like a pile of gozag gold:
- Dithmenos revamp:
- The Shadow Step ability no longer requires the target monster to be ‘still’ and has an HP cost of 8% max HP. Now you don’t have to be a stabber to appreciate shadow steppin’, but you do have to watch that HP.
- The anti-fire conduct is no more. Dith now allows use of fire-themed spells, items, and abilities. We didn’t enjoy that arbitrary fire restriction, and besides, Dith understands that your fires will go out eventually.
- Dithmenos is now an evil god, hence is hated by the good gods and holy monsters.
- New Amulet: the Amulet of the Acrobat, which boosts the wearer’s EV by 15 for non-attacking movement and rest actions. It lets you tumble and roll your way to a successful retreat.
- The Mace of Variability is reworked to sometimes create arcs of chaos that harm nearby monsters, but not the wielder. The enchantment is now a fixed +7. I could just say “blame ebering” here, but sadly I’m also responsible. Xom is also responsible, of course.
- Harpoon Shot, a range 6 ability for swamp worms and iron giants that fires a shot which pulls the player adjacent. If something like deep water or lava blocks your path to the monster, we throw in free collision damage! And for the love of Xom do not shout any Mortal Kombat references when you see monsters using this!
- The Abyss pulls you a level deeper sometimes upon level shift on Abyss:1-4. The chance increases based on XL and decreases based on current depth. Don’t worry, low XL characters have a quite small chance of this happening. If you want to see some numbers, check out this commit.
- Borgnjor’s Vile Clutch constriction damage is reduced by 25% and the spell is no longer in the Necromancer starting book (the Book of Necromancy). The spell’s damage was a bit high in 0.21, since I went for a higher value to avoid people passing up a weird new spell in two formerly unrelated schools. For the Ne book it was a really general damage spell in a book that already has Animate Dead spell. Monsters have terrible levels zombie resistance! We like the idea that Necromancers don’t have things quite so straightforward early on, so you’ll have to find BVC on your own.
- Lee’s Rapid Deconstruction can no longer destroy walls. If there’s three things crawl devs don’t like, it’s infinite digging, damage spells with too many interactions, and easily breaking level layouts. There are more than three things crawl devs don’t like, but this spell had all of those! It’s still a pretty complex spell, and now it’s more fun to use for actually killing monsters. Plus there’s always Shatter if you need to get that spell-based dungeon destruction going on.
- Ozocubu’s Armour now expires immediately upon movement. You have to position more carefully if you want to use this spell now, and no more encouragement to slow-walk around with it always up.
- All fog types spread the same way from Scrolls of Fog. Hopefully that fog scroll will save you now…
- Minotaur monsters have increased health, defenses, and HD. They also spawn with armour and either tomahawks or javelins. Additionally Labs have slightly reduced loot to make the risk vs reward decision a little less obvious. You’ll probably keep going in nearly every lab because you players make poor decisions. I know, I’ve watched the ttyrecs!
- Ilsuiw spawns on Shoals:2-4 with chances similar to other branch-specific uniques instead of nearly always spawning on Shoals:4. We all got tired of fighting Ilsuiw every. single. time. on Shoals:4, didn’t we?
- The Hall of the Hellbinder WizLab has fewer higher-tier demons. Look, i’ll be honest: I put too many demons in there. I blame the demons for encouraging me. Hopefully you don’t get so much damnation and torment now.
- The MP-powered wand mutation allows use of wands at 0 MP and is now considered a good mutation.
- Makhleb’s Major Destruction has its range increased to 7 and Minor Destruction has its range reduced to 5. Hopefully Major Destruction gets a bit more love now. And don’t worry, Minor Destruction is still really good.
- Yredelemnul’s Enslave Soul ability is now smite-targeted. Smite targeted soul enslavement? Sign me up.
- Engulf status from Water Elementals now blocks god abilities but no longer slows movement.
- The Barb status from manticore barbs now counts any non-movement actions towards removing the status.
- Sojobo, air elementals, ball lightnings, and twisters have resistance to Tornado instead of resistance to all wind attacks. Now you can airstrike Sojobo, air elementals, and your ball lightnings (boom). You could airstrike a twister, but if you ever have one in range of airstrike, you probably messed up real good. Oh, and it has over 9000 HP, so good luck.
- Shock serpent retaliation now properly checks rElec. Oops! Our mistake, tee hee!
- Passwall now has better range scaling, a lower max spellpower, and a targeter to show its range.
- Wands of digging now have a targeter showing the dig range.
- The exploration horizon In the Tiles minimap now has a distinct color. This is cool: you can more easily see where you haven’t explored by a glance at the minimap.
- WebTiles chat improvements:
- The player can use `/mute’ and `/unmute’ commands on chatters. Be silent, trolls!
- The `/mutelist’ command shows the current mute list.
- The chat window has a minimize button that removes message notification.
- The `/hide’ and `/hide forever` commands minimize/remove the chat window.
There have been lots of smaller bugfixes and tweaks that don’t get a changelog entry or a mention here, and there will undoubtedly be more significant changes in the next month. You can check out the commit list to see the most recent updates, and please file a bug report if you see any bugs in your trunk games.
Until next time, fellow crawlers, Dithmenos kindly asks you to Spread the eternal night!