Saturday, June 16, 2012

Video demo: Missile targeting in the upcoming ADOM II 0.3.0

Hi everyone! Below you can find a first video demo that should give you an impression about what to expect from the missile combat system in the upcoming ADOM II 0.3.0 release.
Click below to see the video and then continue to read my comments:

Missile combat should feel pretty similar to ADOM with some refinements:
  • Targeting mode is an extension of the 'look mode'. Thus you can see statistical information about your targets in the statistics display on the left.
  • The path to the target is no longer displayed as a dotted line like in ADOM but rather as a framed sequence of tiles. Valid tiles with easy targets use solid green frames, targets that might not be hit (e.g. due to interposing other targets) are shown as yellow dashed frames and impossible targets (e.g. those blocked by walls) are represented as dotted red frames. Finally the target tile itself contains an X.
  • Targetting by mouse is also possible.
  • Targeting mode is intelligent in that it both remembers your last target (independent of whether it  was a monster, a location or something else) and in that it tries to sort monsters in an intelligent way (hostile ones first, neutral ones second, friendly ones last; each group in turn is sorted by distance to the PC from closest to most remote).
  • Targeting mode like look mode allows cycling through monsters and "other" interesting targets.
There is room for some extensions that most likely will not be in 0.3.0 but rather will be added in the 0.3.1, 0.3.2 and following releases:
  • While the infrastructure is already there to target items, map features and other stuff the shot and damage code has not yet been added for that. In the future I will allow to shoot at items on the ground, etc.
  • Throwing potions is not yet included with special effects (they currently only cause damage). I hope to add this to 0.3.0 as it shouldn't be too difficult.
  • Loading new ammunition (after using up all ammunition of a given kind) is still missing.
  • I'm still pondering whether to display the missile combat statistics while targeting. While this might be helpful on one hand it could prove to be a kind of statistical overload on the other hand.
  • I need to add more suffixes and prefixes for missiles and missile weapons.
Things already implemented include:
  • Extensive effects of material on missile weapons and missiles (e.g. treantwood long bows, mithril arrows, eternium sling bullets and so on). The effects are a lot more varied than in ADOM (e.g. modifying weight, hit bonusses, damage, range and other stuff).
  • Extensive rules for what can be combined (based on size, weapon type, etc.).
  • When picking up missiles that match those in your missile slot they will be added to the missile slot automatically.
  • Archery now increases the range of missile attacks and the chance of armor penetrating hits.
  • Missile weapons modify the range of missiles being used.
  • Existing professions have been enhanced to include missiles and missile weapons.
  • All items can be thrown but have very different effects (e.g. in range and the probability of being damaged when reaching the target).
  • Missiles might accidentally hit interposing objects or beings and thus fail to reach the original target.
  • Missile flight is asynchronous (although you usually don't notice it) so that on rare occasions it might be possible to sidestep missiles.
  • Missile combat and melee combat share the same basic combat implementation (in ADOM both were implemented separately) so that adding new features in the future will be much faster.
I have also tried to work hard on the user interface by trying to care for details:
  • Auto-selection of targets and ordered target lists should simplify target selection greatly.
  • The missile path uses both color and line representation to convey information: green/solid means an unobstructed path, yellow/dashed represents a possible blockade on the way to the target (e.g. another monster) and red/dotted means a blocked path (e.g. due to walls). Thus both color-inhibited people (red-green blindness comes to mind) as well as folks with perfect eyesight benefit from the way of display.
  • Important information in the message bar is highlighted in a different color (yellow seemed to be the best choice, white was a did too difficult to recognize due to lack of contrast to the default light gray text).
  • All important information should be available at a glance (current range, maximum range, monster statistics as known, etc.).
  • The key 't' is always used for selecting the first target at a given position (to allow tapping 't' twice quickly for a shot) as in comparison to ADOM Classic it will be possible to have more than one target at a given position (e.g. a monster, all items, the position itself). If more than 10 targets exist in one position 't' will open a dialog that allows more comfortable selection.

That's what I can think of right now. More in future posts. Let me know your thoughts!


  1. It would be great to have a quiver in which you can place different types of ammunition, and shoot with all of them automatically without having to constantly reload.

    I must confess that I never played long with archers in ADOM because it felt too boring for me to have lots of different kinds of arrows (1d4, 1d4+1, 1d4+2) and having to manually reload whenever I ran out of one fo the types. In fact, when I did play with archers or similar, I ended up using the most common kind of arrows only so that I didn't have to reload so much, even if I had much better arrows sitting on the inventory...

  2. Any plans to support multishot? It would be cool to be able to shoot several enemies at a time.

  3. It would be nice if you could automatically pick up missiles that you fired by walking over them.

  4. please, please, please add the possibility to shot wands with the crossbow! It would be soooo cool!