[WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

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akroma222
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Re: [WIP] Akromas GUI - Rune Panel

Post by akroma222 » Wed Aug 28, 2019 7:41 am

akroma222 wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 4:10 pm
Ok, here are the areas of mod work Ive done or at least begun
Their tasks are split into ESSENTIAL and CAN WAIT
Here is a revision of that priority list

Statistics Menu
SpoilerShow
Add scripting support so correct info is displayed for Item types (ammo, bomb, bare hand, caster, runeitem)
Check get / set functions for custom stats (Charisma, Resist Arcane, Stamina)
Move race backgrounds to this menu
Draw hand items (faded) behind their respective info displays
Race Class Abilities (Traits)
SpoilerShow
A handful of the abilities gained through Racial Traits + Class are not finished yet -OR- were going
to be set up by in-game assets / trigger-scripts. Either way, wont take long to sort this out
Trace, Trigger Monster Attack Framework
SpoilerShow
Not necessary to reimplement entirely - just need to do some base framework scripting so that adding
features (eg counter striking) later will be easier and user friendly for other modders
Enchanter Sidebar
SpoilerShow
Already mostly done, just minor changes to how active spell icons are drawn
----------------------------------------------------------
--NON ESSENTIAL STUFF TODO LATER--
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SpoilerShow
Container GUI - Ive designed some new open container Item gui textures.
I have not begun coding for this...could possibly be something to fix up later (non essential + time intensive)

Condition Gui Display (attack panel portrait) Pretty sure that's easy to script up but ..... Im still unsure or undecided on where to display the condition icons for conds a champion currently has

Quick Item Slots AndakRainor's work, just need to integrate into my attack panel spacing (actually this and the Condition Gui Display are competing for attack panel real estate :lol:

ICONS There are still icons to finish for many areas, at a rough guess:
~5 skills, ~ 30 to 50 traits, ~20 conditions

Locks Traps Menu Already have an outdated but semi functional locks and traps menu - but it needs a major redo.

Add remaining monster definitions to combined monster roster (Im up to the letter 'T' I think)

Add vanblam's latest lava red cave assets (and integrate into my sys)

Champion custom damage attack panel Gui fx (will adapt zimbers version to work my attack panels)

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akroma222
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Re: [WIP] Akromas GUI - Rune Panel

Post by akroma222 » Wed Apr 22, 2020 5:29 am

Hey All,

Firstly, apologies for my absence and inconsistent communication..
Last years 'life' issues are resolved and so gladly, I have been able to again work consistently on my asset pack

Before I did though, I went back and replayed through vanilla Grimrock 2 a few times after doing some 'party building' research
I was actually horrified at how badly I was previously building parties for Grimrock 2. Embarrassingly horrified in fact.
I was doing silly things like - running Fighters front row and never using their special attacks, using battlemages back row with firearms ?? Choosing Wizards as my casters :oops: :| :? :o

Of the few party building guides I found, this video would have to of been the most help
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R1KQg9KyhnE

Watching this, I very quickly realized I knew a lot less than I thought about Grimrock 2 :oops:
I then also realized how obnoxiously I was ignoring core Grimrock mechanics and just simple basic game design principles with some (sorry, MOST) of the content I had included in my asset pack. So much of this content (Race, Class, Skills, Traits, Spells, Conditions) was just unnecessary, unbalanced and ill-thought out. Honestly, Im now actually quite embarrassed about some of the spoiler / teaser content ive released on this thread. I will not remove it however.

As such, I have taken a month to completely restructure the Race, Class, Skills, Traits, Spells, Conditions content for the asset pack
I believe now, armed with a new found understanding and respect for the basics of Grimrock 2 party building that this asset pack will be completed sooner, with less issues and be more user friendly to modders. Here is a brief outline regarding the pack:

---------------------------------------------------------------
Asset Pack Outline
------------------------------------------------------------
Objectives:
1. Modify Grimrock 2 party building to be similar to / reminiscent of the 'Wizardy' series system
2. Modify spell casting skills / grouping to be similar to / reminiscent of the 'Wizardy' series system
3. Add new GUI skins for menus and attack panels (as seen in previous screenshots)
4. Add new GUI features to enhance game play and flow (without disruption or complexity - eg: quickitem slots, coodown bar)
5. Ensure pack is user friendly and does not force unwanted features or mechanics onto modders using it
6. Address some commonly agreed upon power / balance issues with the vanilla game
(Firearms, Heavy Weapons, Earth Magic, Wizard class etc etc)
-----------------------------------------------------------
Timeline:
SpoilerShow
Mar - April planning
May - Oct implement changes
Nov testing
Dec release
Jan - Feb maintenance, adjustments
-----------------------------------------------------------

I put a 1 year clock on this asset pack in march, as next year im going back to Uni to do Game Development
Luckily, the restructuring has had so much unfinished, untested and unbalanced work just simply removed
Further, mostly all the coding work for the content / features Ive decded to keep is already done and just needs tweaking / checking

I will be posting (less embarrassing) screen shots / spoilers in the months to come.

Hope you are all well :-)
Akroma

Pompidom
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by Pompidom » Wed Apr 22, 2020 12:43 pm

Watched the first 5 minutes of that video. Everything he said was flat out wrong or just personal opinion bullshit.

On Normal you can make the worst choices of characters/skills/traits combined and still finish the game without issue. As long it's fun and playable, just play like you want to play.

When you create a mod with default character creation, there is only 1 thing you need to take care of:
Rage potion spam mechanic.
Every single mod out there is simply cheesed through with 4 alchemists.
Just stack up a bunch of rage potions on 1 guy and you "oneshot" every single enemy with 1000+ strength.

This strategy beats flat out every single other strategy.

We talked about this last year. It's the reason I did away with all classes and simply implemented:

Warrior - Rogue - Wizard. Simplicity wins in the end. No custom spells that are gated behind ridiculous requirements like for example multiple magic shools. Remove the runepanel completely.

A simple example of how simplicity improves gameplay mechanics from log1 to log2:
Warriors in log1 had to stick with 1 type of weapon, axe or sword etc...
They improved that with the newer and more simple skill system in log2. Tired of using that sword? You can now switch effortlessly to an axe.

Eventually most people will simply stick with the most efficient/cheesy strategy they can come up with and simply spam the same spell over and over again. Making all that hard work irrelevant. Imagine creating 50 custom exotic damage spells with great visuals. Eventually people will figure out which of those spells is the most potent one and simply spam that spell 100% of the time completely ignoring the 49 other spells.

The biggest issue with the approach of all these custom skills/traits/spells: Theorycrafting a good party setup before they start a custom mod with such mechanics is impossible and you would actually need to complete the mod before you have an idea what a good party would be like for that mod.

Minmay's approach in the Drynn halls is just better on all fronts, you encounter staves with dual functionality and you simply equip whatever stave you need for the given situation. It was simple and more enjoyable than any other mod out there with or without custom spells.

I expanded on this idea.

Give your "neutral Wizard" a simple fire staff and he can now spam fireburst with leftclick and fireball with rightclick.
Give him a frost staff, he can now cast frostburst with leftclick and icebolt with rightclick.
Give him a utility staff and he can now cast a forcefield with leftclick and magicbridge with rightclick
Give him a buff staff and enrage party with leftclick and shield party with rightclick
etc...

Since your wizard can equip 4 staves at the same time you will have 8 spells ready to go with a simple click instead of having to mess around with a runepanel. You can always exchange staves when needed, run 2 wizards for a total of 16 spells accessible with a simple click.

This is offcourse my personal view/opinion on these matters.

I would suggest that you implement your custom spells/traits/classes stuff that you have in the default campaign as a testrun and see if it's actually "fun" to play before you invest too much time with it.

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akroma222
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by akroma222 » Thu Apr 23, 2020 3:10 am

Hey Pompidom,
thankyou for your reply :D
Watched the first 5 minutes of that video. Everything he said was flat out wrong or just personal opinion bullshit
On Normal you can make the worst choices of characters/skills/traits combined and still finish the game without issue. As long it's fun and playable, just play like you want to play.
Hmm, did you watch the whole video? In any case, it showed me how terrible I was theory crafting parties :lol:
I was playing on hard and my parties were suffering big time especially late game (compared to parties I built after watching the video anyways)
When you create a mod with default character creation, there is only 1 thing you need to take care of:
Rage potion spam mechanic.
Every single mod out there is simply cheesed through with 4 alchemists.
Just stack up a bunch of rage potions on 1 guy and you "oneshot" every single enemy with 1000+ strength.
This strategy beats flat out every single other strategy.
Yup, Im aware of and have used this strategy. The rage condition spam issue ive already dealt with. No spamming rage potions! :)
It's the reason I did away with all classes and simply implemented:
Warrior - Rogue - Wizard. Simplicity wins in the end.
I really do understand your point here. With my restructuring Ive done away with everything unecessary and any custom race / class Ive decided on keeping are tied to mechanics / features of the original game. I think thats the important thing here.

- Again, I will implore everyone reading this to ignore most of the screenshots of custom content Ive shared thus far .... my asset pack content has radically changed on many fronts :) -
A simple example of how simplicity improves gameplay mechanics from log1 to log2:
Warriors in log1 had to stick with 1 type of weapon, axe or sword etc...
They improved that with the newer and more simple skill system in log2. Tired of using that sword? You can now switch effortlessly to an axe.
Totally agreed - many of the custom ideas I had restricted champions to use of a particular weapon type not congruent with the basic skill set up (Samurai sword bonus for example) - which just wouldnt work. Ive gotten rid of all these kinds of bonuses.
Bonuses from custom content are now simpler, more easily applicable and interface with the skill system as they should.

Eventually most people will simply stick with the most efficient/cheesy strategy they can come up with and simply spam the same spell over and over again. Making all that hard work irrelevant. Imagine creating 50 custom exotic damage spells with great visuals. Eventually people will figure out which of those spells is the most potent one and simply spam that spell 100% of the time completely ignoring the 49 other spells.
Absolutely, couldn't agree more, the ridiculous number of unnecessary spells I had planned on including has been butchered. Custom spells have still been included but there are nowhere near as many and they have been simplified and have more purpose / relevance.
The biggest issue with the approach of all these custom skills/traits/spells: Theory crafting a good party setup before they start a custom mod with such mechanics is impossible and you would actually need to complete the mod before you have an idea what a good party would be like for that mod.
I know - its probably the most ill thought out content ive shown on this thread. The spells and their bonuses. The spells needed you firstly to find the scrolls, then invest in silly skill requirement combinations - and only then - do you discover what conditions (race / class / traits) will give you the bonuses to the spells. EMBARRASSINGLY BAD

This has most certainly been changed. No need to find scrolls. Simple skill requirements. And any bonus or alteration to the spell (of which there is only ever 1, not several) is triggered once you max the skill out (Fire Mastery at skill 5, for example)

Another important point to make here - no more Spellbooks (the way Wizardry has set up) This idea was restricting classes to groups of spells (spellbooks) and these spells wouldnt necessarily share common magic skill requirements - Grimrock is a skill based game and ive done away with anything that interferred with this
Minmay's approach in the Drynn halls is just better on all fronts, you encounter staves with dual functionality and you simply equip whatever stave you need for the given situation. It was simple and more enjoyable than any other mod out there with or without custom spells.

I expanded on this idea.

Give your "neutral Wizard" a simple fire staff and he can now spam fireburst with leftclick and fireball with rightclick.
Give him a frost staff, he can now cast frostburst with leftclick and icebolt with rightclick.
Give him a utility staff and he can now cast a forcefield with leftclick and magicbridge with rightclick
Give him a buff staff and enrage party with leftclick and shield party with rightclick
etc...
Thats sounds very cool :)
Im now (finally) on board with this approach too. Ive done away features that slow the game down, minimizing micro managing, restrictions etc. Ive kept features like the cooldown bar to help with combat flow, quickitem slots so that you dont need to have an inventory open while in combat

EDIT: the one fly in the ointment is the custom runepanel i created. Im awfully fond of it you see, but there are easier ways to manage spell casting. You mentioned doing away with the runepanel. Did you mean, my custom one (and stick with the original runepanel) or no runepanel entirely?? Or just that you had decided to remove it entirely?
Im undecided on what to do with my runepanel situ atm ...

Thanks again Pompidom for your reply and input. I def agree with your argument.
Hopefully I havent sounded too defensive in my replies ;)

Akroma
Last edited by akroma222 on Thu Apr 23, 2020 6:54 am, edited 2 times in total.

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akroma222
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by akroma222 » Thu Apr 23, 2020 4:19 am

We talked about this last year.
Yup, you certainly did point most of this out to me in late 2018.
I wasn't in the right space to listen to your advice then, i know that now
Thanks again good sir :)

Pompidom
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by Pompidom » Thu Apr 23, 2020 11:52 am

About the runepanel, I was simply talking about my own mod.

I didn't remove the runepanel, I simply ensured that you can't bring it up anymore which is the same thing.

Wizards in Blood moon don't have the "cast by hand trait" so they simply have 2 naked fighter hands like the melee classes.
Since my mod doesn't contain default garbage items like for example whitewood wand or any item that can bring up the runepanel, it's simply impossible to cast default spells. They need wands with specific spells for fast leftclick and rightclick interaction.

These wands can be upgraded for upgraded effects and damage, but then the skill requirements go higher and require more energy each cast.
For example a fire staff can be upgraded 5 times.
At first it will simply cast fireburst 1 with left click and fireball 1 with rightclick. It will evolve into firewall / multiple fireballs and then at +5 a full blown close combat flamethrower / custom meteor shower for ranged.

As for your custom runepanel. Just experiment away with it, maybe it turns out great, maybe it doesn't. It was okay in Magic of Grimrock mod. I enjoyed that mod. Leindel did a great job there. Then he put that same system into a different mod and in my personal opinion it was a bust. 2 different mods with the exact same custom spell mechanic. 1 mod turned out great, the other didn't. Sometimes it feels like a coin toss.

Magic of Grimrock (basically LoG2 default campaign on steroids) showed us that adding a lot of extra spells allows for freedom at the cost of having to memorize and cast a lot of gestures especially which slowed down gameplay a lot especially when prebuffing your party. But with the flaws I mentioned earlier. Ignore all the useless spells, and just spam the good ones.

As an experiment, you can do something similar. And then you know if it's a good approach or not.
Implement the system into an existing mod like the default campaign and just playtest it.
I just wasn't fond of the high pitched screaching casting noises that your custom rune panel had.

As for the video, the guy was talking about stat points like vitality and energy not giving extra regen while it actually does, and ditching vitality and strength while upping dex on pretty much all classes on Hard while dex is a dumpstat. So I instantly turned it off.

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akroma222
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by akroma222 » Fri Apr 24, 2020 12:52 am

About the runepanel, I was simply talking about my own mod.
I didn't remove the runepanel, I simply ensured that you can't bring it up anymore which is the same thing.
Gotcha
Wizards in Blood moon don't have the "cast by hand trait" so they simply have 2 naked fighter hands like the melee classes.
Since my mod doesn't contain default garbage items like for example whitewood wand or any item that can bring up the runepanel, it's simply impossible to cast default spells. They need wands with specific spells for fast leftclick and rightclick interaction.

These wands can be upgraded for upgraded effects and damage, but then the skill requirements go higher and require more energy each cast.
For example a fire staff can be upgraded 5 times.
At first it will simply cast fireburst 1 with left click and fireball 1 with rightclick. It will evolve into firewall / multiple fireballs and then at +5 a full blown close combat flamethrower / custom meteor shower for ranged.
Do you ever give the wands special attacks as well? or just the easier faster single click left / right?
I really like that idea... I added something similar to Labyrinth of Lies....
A number of canes (staff items) that click cast 2 different spells - when you cast one spell the cane turns into its alternate form and you can cast the other spell (back and forth, retroactively, unlimited charges)
SpoilerShow
Cane of Cloak & Dagger - cast Blades and Invisibility
Cane of Light & Shadow - cast Healing Light and Bloodcurse
Cane of Time & Tide - cast deflect missile and isolation field
Cane of Fire & Ice - cast incineration field and extinguish
Magic of Grimrock (basically LoG2 default campaign on steroids) showed us that adding a lot of extra spells allows for freedom at the cost of having to memorize and cast a lot of gestures especially which slowed down gameplay a lot especially when prebuffing your party. But with the flaws I mentioned earlier. Ignore all the useless spells, and just spam the good ones.

As an experiment, you can do something similar. And then you know if it's a good approach or not.
Implement the system into an existing mod like the default campaign and just playtest it.
This is a great idea for playtesting the content, definitely... what better benchmark to use than the vanilla campaign
....and in fact, I think I might release the asset pack dropped into the vanilla game like Magic of Grimrock
I just wasn't fond of the high pitched screaching casting noises that your custom rune panel had.
Planning on removing or at least altering those noises to be way softer,
they would get pretty old pretty quickly constantly hearing them :)

Pompidom
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by Pompidom » Fri Apr 24, 2020 1:41 am

akroma222 wrote:
Fri Apr 24, 2020 12:52 am

A number of canes (staff items) that click cast 2 different spells - when you cast one spell the cane turns into its alternate form and you can cast the other spell (back and forth, retroactively, unlimited charges)
That's actually not a bad idea as well. Multiple spells of the same magic school in 1 staff by leftclicking to switch between them and use rightclick charge and release the selected spell.

I got confused about my own mechanics btw.
It's been a while when I implemented these staffs.

How they currently work in my mod is like this:

rightclick = instant cast of spell 1
charge rightclick = cast of spell 2

Sorry about the confusion. Currently no leftclick interaction.

The goal was to increase the combat speed. So when attacking you could simply quickly rightclick your 4 weapons from your 4 partymembers regardless if it was a dagger or a magic wand that casts a spell.

Default magic system = rightclick a caster's hand to open the runepanel, select the runes for Fireburst, then click the cast button.
That's 3 timeconsuming actions just to cast a simple fireburst.

That's a thing of the past in my mod. Just rightclick the fire staff and a fireburst pops out. use the charged rightclick option for fireballs.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c12aMbA ... e=youtu.be

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akroma222
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by akroma222 » Sat Apr 25, 2020 1:03 am

rightclick = instant cast of spell 1
charge rightclick = cast of spell 2

Sorry about the confusion. Currently no leftclick interaction.

The goal was to increase the combat speed. So when attacking you could simply quickly rightclick your 4 weapons from your 4 party members regardless if it was a dagger or a magic wand that casts a spell.
Its a good way to manage it, I imagine you achieved your goal?
The runepanel really does trip up the flow of combat, especially in intense battles when facing multiple enemies....
The cognitive load of having to keep track of opponents, through difficult terrain etc etc... Then lumping a time consuming, complicated rune combination on top of that >> often makes for a quick 1 click Fireburst when something else may have been slightly better
I guess entering in simple vs complex rune combos into the runepanel does help simulate the difference in difficulty in casting simple vs powerful spells - but by placing the more powerful spell as the special build up attack - you are still regulating this with a more consistent, simpler set build up time instead of multi clicking :)

Love the tunes in the video :lol: :D
All 4 secret levels in Labyrinth of Lies had UW2 music as the ambient level tracks

Pompidom
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Re: [WIP] Akroma Asset Pack

Post by Pompidom » Sat Apr 25, 2020 3:51 pm

It's satifying when things get crowded and monsters are comming in from all sides. Shockbursts, firewalls, frostbursts and even forcefields are instantly conjured with instant rightclicks and basically serve more as the "default melee" attack from mages, big magic attacks can then be charged and some of them get released after an additional delay after the charged rightclick giving the impression all your characters launch their special attack simultaneous after a forcefield drops down where you trapped or blocked a strong enemy.

Balance with this method can be achieved by hefty energy requirements. And making most encounters a trapped "battle arena" in which you either win or die instead of backing off to safety to a previous area.

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