Monday, November 30, 2015

The Abomination lands in Darkest Dungeon today!

Okay, so here's the deal with Darkest Dungeon's newest hero, the Abomination.  He's a dude with kinda'-meh skills, and because he is by definition an abomination, no Religious hero will agree to go on a dungeon-dive with him.  You can transform him, at any time, into his bestial form.  It doesn't cost a turn, and in his wereform he "hits like a truck," I'm told - but doing so increases the stress of everyone else in the party.  Returning him to human form, likewise, reduces party stress - but I suspect the tradeoffs may not be worth it...

I shall certainly have to give it a shot.

Patch notes!

INHUMAN BONDAGEThis update adds a unique new playable hero, new monsters, rare trinkets, and a host of new features! 
NEW HERO CLASS – THE ABOMINATIONThe Abomination, designed by our Lord Tier Kickstarter backer, Josh L, aka “MaxKojote” is a twisted concept indeed!  A brooding and desperate man, the Abomination has been outcast, branded and imprisoned due to the “sickness” that lies within him.  Completely unlike any other hero to wander into the Hamlet thus far, the Abomination can switch between two forms during combat: human and beast. Each form has different combat skills, so you’ll need to figure out the strengths of each. But beware: the Abomination unsettles religious heroes so much that they refuse to serve with him.  Additionally, the emergence of a beast in combat is a stressful event for other party members! Fortunately, they recover somewhat when the Abomination returns to his brooding (but human) self. 
NEW MONSTERS – THE COLLECTOR AND THE MADMANThis update also features two brand new monsters, again designed by Kickstarter backers!
  • THE COLLECTOR is a tall and terrifying figure – a king in yellow! Just what he collects is something we’ll save for you to discover, but rest assured it’s unsettling! The Collector is a challenging miniboss encounter created by Ryan C.
  • THE MADMAN is a natural fit for the corrupted expanses of the Estate. He wanders every region, joining up with the myriad horrors and shouting (stressful) prophesies of doom! Evasive and troubling, the Madman was designed by Josh L.
NEW TRINKETSThere are new class-specific trinkets of varying rarities for the Abomination, and of course, some special loot from the new monsters. 
MONSTER IMPROVEMENTSMany monster AI improvements have been made, with particular emphasis on Veteran and Champion level monsters. 
Many Veteran and Champion level monsters now have extra skill “riders” in the form of debuffs and other new wrinkles. This gives monster progression more flavor, and presents some new complications as you advance through the game.STRESSSSS 
In general, we’ve been finding that Veteran and Champion level quests haven’t had the same relative stress threat as starting quests. This is due to a variety of factors, including relative power progression of heroes compared to monsters. Our intent is for stress to be a tough consideration the whole game through, just like health.  We definitely want to reward increasing player skill and knowledge, too. Ideally, the game should be a tightrope walk the whole way through. 
Some of the above mentioned monster changes are intended to raise stress in higher level missions, and we’ll continue looking for ways to get it to where we want it.  However, it’s not our intent to drive up difficulty/stress of Apprentice level quests, so we’ll be monitoring those, too.  Your feedback is valuable – keep us posted! 
PROVISION LIMITSThe Estate now has limited provisions to sell, depending on what length of quest you embark on.  The intent here is not to unduly constrain you, but rather to control extreme loadouts (like 16 stacks of food).  You remain free to over or under provision, based upon your budget and risk tolerance. 
HEART ATTACK REVISIONHeart Attacks are an important part of the game, but the abrupt wall and insta-death sometimes presents too big of a penalty for some chains of uncontrollable events.  In this update, we are experimenting with a revised system which works as follows:
  • Upon hitting 200 stress, the hero is reduced immediately to Death’s Door (0 HP). Unless healed quickly, the hero will be vulnerable to death.
  • Additionally, stress is dropped to 170 after this happens.
  • If stress rises to 200 again and the hero isn’t yet off of Death’s Door, he dies immediately.
  • If the hero is not on Death’s Door and stress rises to 200 again, the same cycle begins again (dropped to Death’s Door).
  • Finally – if you have a Heart Attack and get healed off of Death’s Door, there is a persistent debuff for the rest of that quest, reflecting the wear and tear on the hero’s body.
Our intent is to retain the deadly aspect of Heart Attacks, while also allowing for a little more play to save heroes that hit that limit.  Many players have found the binary nature of the existing heart attacks to be frustrating. 
We’ll be monitoring the new system and will decide about its permanent inclusion a bit later. 
MORTALITY DEBUFFSAlmost dying is, we’re assuming, a mildly traumatic experience.  To reflect that in-game, we’ve introduced Mortality Debuffs.  If a hero is reduced to Death’s Door and then healed off of it, he is given a set of debuffs that last for the rest of the quest.  This reflects the toll on his body from facing down death. 
Additionally, there is a larger set of debuffs that occur if the inciting event was a Heart Attack, as mentioned above in the Heart Attack section. 
STALL PENALTYDeliberately prolonging battles is always a risky proposition when facing bloodthirsty fiends. We’ve had a system in place for a while that discourages this, but we’ve revamped that system with the nucleus of a new one.  As before, the party will become agitated, taking stress damage as the fight drags on against a lone adversary.  Protracted pugilism is a noisy affair – those who ignore their parties’ warnings will attract the attention and ire of enemy reinforcements! 
We expect some kinks as we refine this system, so we’ll be monitoring feedback. 
  • Leper – increased crit; increased Withstand stress heal slightly
  • Plague Doctor – increased blight dmg slightly; increased physical damage of disorienting blast
  • Tweaked Debuff resistances for classes to give more differences and reflect the classes better. Those affected: BH, LEP, MAA, OCC, PD
  • Man-at-Arms: his Riposte was originally 1 round, but a while ago a bug crept in that raised it to 3 rounds, which is longer than intended. In this build, we are experimenting with setting it to 2, and will be looking for feedback on the overall power of this move.
  • Experiment with D8 initiative instead of D10
  • Monster ai improvements – skill and mark cooldowns to limit overuse of some skills
  • Cove – “Call of the Deep” nerf
  • Cove – Fishy Shaman brain improvement
  • Shambler now transports you to a rift in time and space.
  • Add confirm for retreating out of battle that will result in death.
  • Add trinket sell instruction text.
  • Added disease icon to roster icon.
  • Added validation so curio effects will error if being added to skills.
  • Big monsters should now disable stall penalty correctly
  • Corrupt save handling before loading campaign.
  • Cultist witch incantation doesn’t crit
  • Custom stall mashes per region
  • Diseases can no longer be purged.
  • Do not count dead heroes trinkets towards ancestors trinkets.
  • Enable backup saves on mac.
  • Fix controlled hero initiative crash.
  • Fix monster skill effects being specified as curio. (Fix to till next camp debuffs)
  • Fix persisting boss loading screen when starting new campaign.
  • Fix piglet double turn.
  • Fix q,e camping exploit.
  • Fix to guardian’s shield buffs and a few other buffs that should’ve been Back Rank dependent instead of HP dependent
  • Fix to move effect bug involving different sized monsters.
  • Fix to not being able to right click certain heroes while camping.
  • Fix to siren save crash.
  • Fixed problem with ambushes in curio/treasure rooms wiping the curio/treasure if you come out and come back in.
  • Fixed problem with map icons not behaving properly between curio/treasures and battle with curio and battle with treasure.
  • Made narration samples start immediately.
  • More trinket buff fixes
  • Move effects can be applied to the corpse of the monster you killed.
  • Mute now works for cinematic.
  • New mute and master volume options.
  • Remove ability to select skill during event.
  • Remove boss room icon once boss is killed.
  • Removed “Target:” specification on effect descriptions.
  • Start map zoomed out to see entire map.
  • Unselect skill when you go into event.
Now the question is, will Red Hook actually make its promised January 19 launch?  I doubt it, but here's hopin'!

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