Combat systems and Dungeonism

Pie Chart Combat If you’ve played my Dungeon Escape prototype, you may have encountered a skeleton. If you did, you may have attacked him. If you attacked him, you surely were witness to what I affectionately call my Pie Chart Combat System. I was much pleased when I invented it. It solved a problem I gave myself, which was to make a random combat system that used attack and defense skills and wasn’t picky about what those skill values were. That is, no maximums and minimums. The Pie Chart system takes an attacker’s attack skill, adds it to a defender’s defend skill, picks a number in that range, and then makes the attack successful if the result is less than the attack skill. In other words, the two skills become pies on a wheel of fortune, and then you spin the wheel. It’s simple. That’s why I liked it. It even allows for more than two outcomes if you add in another skill.

The Pie Chart Combat System is one of the fundamental things I carried over from Dungeon Escape to Dungeonism. It was a crucial piece of value I was going to preserve in the new, simpler game, while most things around it changed. In some ways, it was the central aspect of Dungeonism.

Diagram of possible attacks That is, until I got rid of it, which I had to do because it was getting in the way of some other mechanics I had added in. Because one of my goals for Dungeonism was to make the player use the space a little more in his strategies, I came up with a new blocking system. Attacks would always get blocked when the defender was facing the attacker. Right away, this encourages you to always step around your victim before you hit them, which you’re not always close enough to do. (The defender also automatically turns to block if he rested that turn.) This sets up an interesting trade-off that gets too muddied when you’re also hoping not to get tripped up by pure chance. And along with some fatigue-based mechanics, it makes combat interesting enough that any benefit from the ambiguity of a random system is redundant. Sorry, pie chart.

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