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[Mechanic] Dynamic Spellbook

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Apr 16, 2012
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#1
Traditionally as your dungeon evolves so does your book of spells as you delve deeper and deeper into the arcane arts. But what if your spellbook wasn't set in stone, but rather evolved as you and your dungeon grow and expanded around you. Be it through the creatures inhabiting your blissful domain of darkness, your selection of magic use or even the epitaph bequeathed as your namesake a dynamic spellbook develops alongside you reflecting the nature of the overlord and his / her dungeon.

Spell Types / Spell Elements:
  • There are six possible books of spells, each one reflecting the nature of the monsters that will inhabit your dungeon:
    • Fire - Deadly magic that incinerates all beneath your gaze, engulfing your opponents in a deadly inferno
    • Ice: Frost based spells that are able to freeze your opponents creatures in place, making ice-sculptures out of your opponents creatures, to be swiftly torn down my those in your service
    • Electric: Chain lightning spells that induce paralysis paralyzing your opponents creatures or inhibiting their movement, thus that they become a danger even unto their allies.
    • Poison: Magic that plagues your enemies with sickness and disease alongside a series of debilitating spells to reduce your opponents power in battle
    • Dark: Full of twisted archaic arts. The dark spellbook branches into the forsaken realm of necromancy alongside arcane arts that corrupt the minds of your opponents creatures. This book contains spells such as a localised slow time, raise dead and turn coat spells of varying degree and duration.
    • Light: The traditional school of magic used by heroes. It contains spells that grant insight into the unseen, heal your creatures and provide useful buffs in battle (granting them 10% more attack speed temporarily, take 20% less damage, things like that)
    • FOR OPTION THREE ONLY [SPELLS BASED ON CREATURE DEMOGRAPHICS]
      • Neutral Spellbook: Contains a series of generic spells that can be researched anytime irrespective of current population proportions
      • Hero monsters grant access to the Light Spellbook if their population density is high enough
But how do I choose my Spellbook and alter my spellbook?

There are numerous ways in which this could be inplemented. Below are four different ideas that focus on different ways a dynamic spellbook could work, offering a choice of both linear and absolute dynamic change.
  1. Select an Epithet before the game begins (most linear)
  • In the lobby you select an epithet to alter your ingame spellbook (i.e "<playername> the scourge" would grant you access to a poison based spellbook, "<playername> the Glacial" would give you exclusive ice/water based spells etc et). This idea basically just diversifies the set of spells used by all players in the game. Multiple players would be able to use the same Epithet and thus the same spellbook
  • Spells are researched the traditional way and the spells access is dependant purely on your current degree of research
2. Using "Spell-points" to alter your spellbook in-game (semi-dynamic)
  • Rather than having a set spellbook as in option one as your creatures research you are granted "Spell-Points" that can be used to learn a new spell or upgrade one currently in your spellbook (Max five upgrades per spell?)
  • Basically this option just focuses like a skill-tree in an rpg game, where the specific classes of spells are Fire, Ice, Electric, Poison, Light and Dark respectfully. (Though on second thoughts maybe exlude light since your the dark lord???)
3. The spells in your spellbook are dependent on your monster demographics (Most dynamic)
  • Each creature is granted an affiliation (dark, light, poison, electric, fire or ice)
  • You are given two spellbooks, a neutral one and a dynamic one that evolves depending on the PERCENTAGE of creatures associated with a given type in your dungeon. (i.e your population list will also show something like POPULATION: 10% Poison, 50% Dark, 20% Ice, 10% Fire, 5% Electric, 5% Light) giving you an idea of what spellbooks you are close to researching, the above example could have T4 dark, T1 Poison and Fire and T2 Ice magic.
  • THe branches of magic are broken into four tiers of spells and the degree into which you can access these tiers are dependant on the proportion of creatures affiliated with a specific type residing in your dungeon:
    • 15 10% of monsters in your dungeon being one element grants access to T1 spells
    • 30 20% of monsters in your dungeon being one element grants access to T2 spells
    • 45 30% of monsters in your dungeon being one element grants access to T3 spells
    • 55 40% of monsters in your dungeon being one element grants access to T4 spells
    • The reason the caps are set so low is that it prevents players being forced to discard monsters they would deem "Unneccesary" from their dungeon. (Originally had values set at 25, 50, 75 and 100 percent)
  • If your creature count exceeds the maximum cap (for T4 magic) your spells of the associated element have their base power raised by 2% for each additional 5% contributing to your dungeons population (this effect is culmitive, ie 50% will have 4% more power and so-on). <- Please not to do this players have to sacrifice diversity as a CHOICE so it's not gamebreaking as they choose to LIMIT THEMSELVES you don't HAVE to power up your magic, it's just a reward for those particularly OCD one creature strand type overlords ;)
  • To access the new tier of magic it is not just a matter of having the correct number of creatures attributing to your population, T1 <element> magic has to be researched at the library and so on and so forth, researching is only available when you've reached the specific population threshold, should your population fall beneath the threshold research progress is maintained but cannot be continued till you exceed it.
    • Thus the inclusion of the neutral spellbook that can be researched and enhanced throughout the game, though these spells are comparatively weaker to the top tier spells they can be researched quicker

    4. Focussing on a path of magic increases your power in that school (Dynamic - Kudos to wildnr3 for this idea :])
  • As you use magic from a specific school of spells your proficiency in that division increases allowing you to cast spells of increased complexity within that element.
  • Your proficiency basically uses and experience-per-spell type system whereby casting spells increases your proficiency in that class, the rate of level-up increasing gradually with each spell learned
    • When you level up a class in spells there are three possible options:
      1. You are granted a new spell instantaneously (makes library defunct)
      2. You are able to research new spells based on your proficiency (from the library)
      3. Or a combination of both (i.e. you have a neutral spellbook (as in three) and through gaining proficiency you gain access to increasingly difficult degrees of magic
Changelog
April 27th:​
  • Lowered the Tier requirements for magic from 15/30/45/55 to 10/20/30/40
  • Introduced option 4: Your spellbook evolves in regards to the kind of magic you are using
  • If your creature count exceeds the maximum cap (i.e. for T4 magic) your associated spells base power will be raised by 2% for each additional 5% contributing to your dungeons population
May 3rd​
  • Completed section 4
  • Corrected some of the grammar
Share with me your thoughts :grumpy: Maybe even some spell ideas!
 

wildnr3

Blood Imp
Apr 16, 2012
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#2
I like the idea and it would surely add more diversity. On the other hand, a straightforward spellbook is more clear and easy to use which has a bit more charm to me than to complex systems.

Your third option with a dynamic spellbook based on an affiliation is very nice in my eyes. Still straightforward but somewhat personalysed, but i don't see this happen based on monster demographics since this changes throughout one game. Maybe based on your way of gameplay. So you're spellbook evolves with you while you play through the campaign, but personalysed to your playstyle. so if you use a lot of fire spells, you get more spells with added fire elements for example.
 
Likes: Karakzon
Feb 5, 2012
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#3
I like the idea and it would surely add more diversity. On the other hand, a straightforward spellbook is more clear and easy to use which has a bit more charm to me than to complex systems.

Your third option with a dynamic spellbook based on an affiliation is very nice in my eyes. Still straightforward but somewhat personalysed, but i don't see this happen based on monster demographics since this changes throughout one game. Maybe based on your way of gameplay. So you're spellbook evolves with you while you play through the campaign, but personalysed to your playstyle. so if you use a lot of fire spells, you get more spells with added fire elements for example.
I agree with this comment fully.

Another note: if you were to consider spells based on dungeon demiograph, then ide max out at under 50% at least. The game is going to be propped to balancing creature numbers between all races, so even 40% of a single type is pushing it in my eyes. Itll realy depend on the final creature composition the devs go for. And even then, if they keep on creating new creatures/expansions after the main game is released then the third design will need tweeking every single time. Mechanic point of veiw is a good idea. Maintanence as you progress game development itll just eat into time.
 
Apr 16, 2012
71
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#4
I like the idea and it would surely add more diversity. On the other hand, a straightforward spellbook is more clear and easy to use which has a bit more charm to me than to complex systems.

Your third option with a dynamic spellbook based on an affiliation is very nice in my eyes. Still straightforward but somewhat personalysed, but i don't see this happen based on monster demographics since this changes throughout one game. Maybe based on your way of gameplay. So you're spellbook evolves with you while you play through the campaign, but personalysed to your playstyle. so if you use a lot of fire spells, you get more spells with added fire elements for example.
Interesting idea :D I just thought that being based on your creatures would perhaps be better for multiplayer seeing as spell choice over time may take a while to develop :S I can see it being used in single player however! I'll add it as a 4th option / alternative in my op :]

@Karakzon Yeah idk about the tier requirements for spells, but I think that thats one of the beauties of the system. Players can either choose to specialise in a specific attribute of creatures or diversify. Should you diversify then you'll have access to more spells, though they'll be of lower power and a more flexible army, or a player can choose to focus on a single type which makes you more powerful as a mage but restricts your unit choice somewhat. I'll lower the cap to 10/20/30/40 though ^^ it still seems reasonable.
 
Feb 5, 2012
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#5
Just a small suggestion:

If you go with the cap of 10/20/30/40 then you could have a mechanic that increased the basic power of spells for any % above the required cap. That way you dont end up with players being penalised who end up with a single kind of unit as their main. -Even though i did say the majority of the time it should be balanced out, this just covers all angles-

Love your idea. :) hope to see more.
 
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