Roguelike gamedesign: food problem

Let’s remember Frodo who went to Mordor from Lothlorien. He got limited supplies and he should be causious with them. It was fun 😀

There is a big discussion @ oook considering food in Angband. I wanna share some my thoughts about this topic:

1) Food is a resource which slowly depleted (the same as light); it works differently in compare to other sources, like HP (which depleted very fast, but only during the battle).

2) With such long-term resources there should be rare occasions which brings ‘crysis’ to it. There are RNG events which could drain this resource at once: mobs EAT_FOOD, traps; and also draining it’s more slowly – curses, wearing powerful items (magical rings in Nethack). The more different events like this – the better (I mean diversity). Some of them should be higly unpredicted.

Considering RNG – it would be great to add ego monsters, like it’s implemented in TomeNET. Please Nick, check this out. And among such monster could be added ‘hungry’ mobs. So occasionally even simple orc could EAT_FOOD from you 😉

3) Town is a place to restock food. Of course, making player to go there too often is bad; but please remember that recalling to the dungeon every now and then increasing risks (you could appear in the middle of ‘bad lvl’). Anyway, player should be able to get certain amount of food in town to be able to solve RNG ‘crysis’ (the same way as we buy healing potions), but not have too much of it to become bored (that’s why I recently made an experimental price x100 on satisfy hunger scrolls (for BM) and removed them from sale @ PWMA).

The question is: how to make player ‘search’ for food while in the dungeon. In IronMan mode it’s quite clear, but in regular mode with unlimited WoR mechanics it could bring additional food ‘grind’ to the game. So if we would apply nethack approach and would make food to rot in time (in Angband it could be made like this: let’s it just looses ‘turns’ in time) – player would have to return to dungeon more often.. It could be solved by making WoR scrolls more limited resource too.. But it would make players to have boring walk long way by stairs sometimes.. So it’s quote complex issue.

Ok. Why the hell not to remove food from town?! Logic: it’s dire time, war with Morgoth is going on, 1kg of gold cost less than 1kg of wheat. So shortage is quite logical. It bring the game closer to ‘ironman’ experience, but as you still could recall back to town, it’s not an ironman!..

I’ll try to test it @ my PWMA server and would report there after a while 😀 Hunger is comming ™

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