[Updated v1.1]Tweaking Monsters - monster difficulty mod

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[Updated v1.1]Tweaking Monsters - monster difficulty mod

Postby Vertigo » Sat Oct 22, 2011 7:48 am

I've updated the mod to v1.1. I have fixed the Hell Knight/Baron of hell issues and changed the Lost Soul and Pain Elemental.

Changes:
Hell Knights now function like their -fastmonsters counterpart, they move faster, shoot more and the projectiles are a faster. Simple yet effective

Barons of Hell are don't just stand still and spam you, the fire a volley of 3 projectiles, pause/reacquire target then fire a volley of 1 projectile. I find them a lot more balanced now. I also find them sufficiently different to Hell Knights.

Lost Souls were totally redone, no longer translucent and they do infight. I halved their painchance (128 vs 256) and lowered their health by 25% (75 vs 100). I had to make them a bit weaker to compensate for the buffed Pain Elemental.

Pain Elementals once again infight. I think the most significant changes are that I slightly lowered their painchance (96 vs 128). You can still keep them in their painstate with a chaingun/chainsaw/plasmagun but they have a slightly better chance to get off one more lost soul in certain situations. I don't think you will ever consciously notice this (at least that's the plan) but they will overall spit more lost souls throughout your game. More significantly I lowered their mass (275 vs 400) so when you spam them with the chaingun or give them a solid SSG blast they will fly back more, opening up space for them to spit more Lost Souls.

All changes can be found in the changelog


Download v1.1


Hey guys,

I started playing around a bit with decorate and decided to make a mod that makes monsters harder to get to start learning decorate but more importantly exploring game design. I pretty much kept the monsters at their default health (only the revenant has increased health, 350 vs 300) as to keep maps balanced for ammo. I also tried to keep monsters similar to their originals in terms of aesthetics as I wanted to avoid the mod feeling 'ZDoom-y' (only aesthetics changed are blood color - including tan blood for the PE! - and the chaingunner's attack sound)

I tried to make the monsters more difficult by adding variables and not having them behave as expected instead of purely buffing stats (such as imp fireballs being able to bounce once, mancubii have a different attack pattern etc) while buffing some stats slightly. I really like fast monsters so it's kinda similar but with a whole lot more spice :]

If anybody has a few minutes to spare or wants to play a harder version of Doom that still feels like Doom (no railgun zombies!) I would love some feedback.

Download link v1.0
Complete changelog - I personally recommend playing it for a bit then reading this as it has every change listed (bar blood color)


Thanks you guys and keep on Doomin'
Last edited by Vertigo on Sat Oct 22, 2011 5:59 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Tweaking Monsters - monster enhancement/difficulty mod

Postby Edward-san » Sat Oct 22, 2011 9:07 am

I like this. About improvements, imho:

1) For the zombies, you should keep the same attack rate as the player counterpart;
2) also, it would be interesting if the monsters with multiple fires can stop firing when player is out of sight, like chaingunguy does.
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Re: Tweaking Monsters - monster enhancement/difficulty mod

Postby Blue Shadow » Sat Oct 22, 2011 11:16 am

Here is my take on this:
  • Rapid firing monsters don't need the combination of MISSILEMORE and MISSILEEVENMORE flags. One of them is enough.
  • The imp's and arachnotron's projeciles bouncyness is very annoying and will make short work of you.
  • ALWAYSFAST for the demon and specter? This is how those two monsters behave on Nightmare difficulty for crying out loud.
  • The ALWAYSFAST flag combined with MISSILEMORE and MISSILEEVENMORE makes the hell nobles fire almost endlessly with no interruption. They just stand there and constantly fire at you.
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Re: Tweaking Monsters - monster enhancement/difficulty mod

Postby Matt » Sat Oct 22, 2011 1:01 pm

Just tried a co-op botmatch on the last 3 maps of D2 with this. Very fun, sort of like some of the earlier versions of Brutal Doom.

I'm a bit concerned about the non-infighting lost souls though o_O there are quite a few maps that spam you with them on the assumption that their numbers naturally thin out over time so this could raise some ammo/tedium issues.

The bouncing imp balls seem kinda "gamey" as a concept but work well enough ingame.

I really like how the cacos can't be totally pinned by the chaingun anymore. That alone makes things so much more dynamic...

EDIT: I should note that the way I have my ini set up this is my default music for Map29, which may affect my perception considerably.
Last edited by Matt on Sun Oct 23, 2011 12:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Tweaking Monsters - monster enhancement/difficulty mod

Postby Vertigo » Sat Oct 22, 2011 4:48 pm

Edward-san wrote:I like this. About improvements, imho:

1) For the zombies, you should keep the same attack rate as the player counterpart;
2) also, it would be interesting if the monsters with multiple fires can stop firing when player is out of sight, like chaingunguy does.


1. I'll try this and see how well it works.

2. That's definitely an improvement. Honestly it works the way it does now because this is my first attempt at DECORATE work. To do that I think I'd have to make a custom attack, can anyone proficient in DECORATE confirm/deny this?

Thanks for the suggestions.

Blue Shadow wrote:Here is my take on this:
1. Rapid firing monsters don't need the combination of MISSILEMORE and MISSILEEVENMORE flags. One of them is enough.
2. The imp's and arachnotron's projeciles bouncyness is very annoying and will make short work of you.
3. ALWAYSFAST for the demon and specter? This is how those two monsters behave on Nightmare difficulty for crying out loud.
4. The ALWAYSFAST flag combined with MISSILEMORE and MISSILEEVENMORE makes the hell nobles fire almost endlessly with no interruption. They just stand there and constantly fire at you.


1. Yeah, I wasn't sure about this, I'll test it again with just either flag enabled. Do you (or anyone else) know how each flag works specifically? i.e at what distance do monsters start attack with either one?

2. I disagree about the imps projectile, I find it makes you have to think a bit more because you can't just dodge it once (easymode) - you have to remember to make sure it doesn't hit you in the back. In practice I found this causes more infighting and once you alter your dodging it's not that terribly hard to deal with imps while still adding a random variable. The fireballs also lose momentum when hitting a surface. That being said that varies with what map is being played, lots of imps in a very cramped space might be undoable, did you actually notice this problem ingame? To be honest it might be an unavoidable consequence, a mod that changes balance will unfortunately break some maps :( Do you have any other suggestions on how to improve the imp instead of bouncing projectiles? Honestly, at the moment I really like this feature - anyone else wanna chime in on this?

As for the arachnotron this was a very iffy change for me, I wasn't sure if it would work or not. I played around with making the plasma do much less damage but travel much faster but it was actually quite difficult (I use map07 as my benchmark) due to the screen being red so much of the time. Any suggestions on what I could do? Anyone else have input on the arachnotron's projectile?

3. "This is how those two monsters behave on Nightmare difficulty for crying out loud." Uhhhh, so? I find it works super well. The demons were always my favorite part of using fast monsters, they became a real enemy instead of just ammo dumps. The point of this mod is to have improved/different gameplay but stay close to vanilla, why would I not use +ALWAYSFAST on the demons if it works so well? I'm not going to change things for the sake of making them different. I'm pretty confused by this response :S

4. Yeah, this is definitely a problem. I'll try a few things and sort it out. I've got a few ideas.

Vaecrius wrote:Just tried a co-op botmatch on the last 3 maps of D2 with this. Very fun, sort of like some of the earlier versions of Brutal Doom.


Wow, honestly, this made my day. Such a compliment coming from you is huge to me :D

Vaecrius wrote:I'm a bit concerned about the non-infighting lost souls though o_O there are quite a few maps that spam you with them on the assumption that their numbers naturally thin out over time so this could raise some ammo/tedium issues.


This was a pretty experimental change. I lowered their health a decent bit to try to compensate for this. I'll make a test map and test it more and try to get it to work, if it doesn't I'll scrap it and figure something else out. Any suggestions on what could be good?

Vaecrius wrote:The bouncing imp balls seem kinda "gamey" as a concept but work well enough ingame.


That's exactly my thinking. I was really skeptical but the thing I like about is that it's a fairly small change but changes the way you fight imps a lot, it's no longer "run forwards, strafe once to dodge, shotgun to the face - done" or "strafe left and right spamming shotgun/chaingun until the group is dead", you have to stay aware of the projectile after it passes you and pay more attention to map geometry.

Vaecrius wrote:I really like how the cacos can't be totally pinned by the chaingun anymore. That alone makes things so much more dynamic...


I'm so glad someone noticed this :D It adheres to the idea of 'small monster changes - big gameplay changes'
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Re: Tweaking Monsters - monster enhancement/difficulty mod

Postby Blue Shadow » Sun Oct 23, 2011 6:10 am

Vertigo wrote:3. "This is how those two monsters behave on Nightmare difficulty for crying out loud." Uhhhh, so? I find it works super well. The demons were always my favorite part of using fast monsters, they became a real enemy instead of just ammo dumps.

Sorry about that but I'm just saying that you need to be reasonable here. There are lots of mapsets out there that are harder than Doom 2, i.e Plutonia and its PWADs. Some of the things thay did to compensate for the monsters' weaknesess in these PWADs is to increase the amount of monsters, tha way the monsters are placed in a map to ambush the player and using tougher monsters more commonly.

Vertigo wrote:I'm not going to change things for the sake of making them different'

The way I see it is that you are making things difficult for the sake of being difficult disregarding balance almost entirely. That's just me.

A little bit of challenge is welcome, but there is a point where the fun turns to frustration. Balance is a key.

I'm just stating a point here. However, it's your mod and you are free to do whatever you like with it. I may not like it but you already have two people who do so far, which is a good thing I guess.

All I can do is wish you luck on the project. So... good luck.
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Re: Tweaking Monsters - monster enhancement/difficulty mod

Postby Blox » Sun Oct 23, 2011 6:56 am

Vertigo wrote:4. Yeah, this is definitely a problem. I'll try a few things and sort it out. I've got a few ideas.

Code: Select allExpand view
actor HellKnightH : HellKnight replaces HellKnight
{
Speed 13
FastSpeed 16 //I guess it uses this due to below flag. <- Nope.
BloodColor green
+ALWAYSFAST
states
{
See:
    BOS2 A 0 A_Jump(200,"MeleeChase") //I'd rather rip you to pieces.
    BOS2 AAABBCCCDD 2 A_Chase
    loop
MeleeChase:
    BOS2 AAABBCCCDD 2 A_Chase("Melee","") //It's the dancing knight!
    goto See
Missile:
    BOS2 E 0 A_Jump(random(1,256),"BadMissile") //Oops
    BOS2 EF 8 A_FaceTarget
    BOS2 G 6 A_BruisAttack
    goto See
BadMissile:
    BOS2 E 4 A_FaceTarget
    BOS2 F 3 A_SetAngle(random(-10,10)+(random(-4,4)) //I totally forgot to aim that.
    BOS2 G 5 A_BruisAttack
    goto See
}
}


Voilah, should do the trick.
Just change a few things for the baron, and you should be good to go.

Edit: Tweaked it a bit, should be better.
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