Poll

If you could pick one of these...

Laser-Blaster (angled)
6 (35.3%)
Two new skills: Projectile constructive, projectile destructive (with same arc)
4 (23.5%)
Slider (either temporary or permanent)
6 (35.3%)
Jetboarder
1 (5.9%)

Total Members Voted: 17

Author Topic: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill  (Read 11162 times)

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Offline mobius

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #30 on: March 21, 2020, 11:42:04 pm »
My favorites are slider and runner if it's implemented like this:

Turbo lemming? Walker becomes runner. Most other skills will be performed two times as fast.
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Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #31 on: March 22, 2020, 01:04:15 am »
I've split off any "how might the Slider work" discussion into a seperate topic: https://www.lemmingsforums.net/index.php?topic=4713.0

Note that, while the Slider seems to be the strongest candidate so far, the creation of the above topic is not a guarantee that the Slider is going to happen.

Unless it's directly relevant to considering the Slider vs other options, no further discussion of how the Slider should or shouldn't behave in this topic please - take it to the other topic instead.

Offline Minim

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #32 on: March 22, 2020, 06:41:24 am »
Haven't posted my thoughts on the final new skill yet, so here I go.

I mentioned about a ladder skill a moment ago. I call this skill a "Girderer" although I'm sure somebody can come up be better names. A right-facing lemming builds a 6-pixel vertical tile, jumps on top of it, and creates another tile to the right of its peak, and so on. It could be overpowering, so we could limit this to 6 tiles, therefore the skill will make the terrain 31 pixels high and 6 pixels long.

If this materialises, it would be a great alternative to give lemmings better upwards access!
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Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #33 on: March 22, 2020, 06:58:23 am »
Okay, so I've looked over the proposals in this topic again. I've added a "willing to consider" list to the first post, to make it clear that certain ideas have been seen and not specifically ruled out.

If you've made / seen a suggestion that isn't listed anywhere in the first post, please feel free to bring it up again (and perhaps point me towards the posts discussing it).

For the Girderer, I feel an explanation is worthwhile as to why it's rejected - this is essentially just a skill that performs a stacker-walker-stacker-walker-etc cycle. Therefore, I don't feel it's offering that much value as a new skill, and would rather something that does offer a bit more than this.

Offline WillLem

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #34 on: March 22, 2020, 07:39:50 am »
A right-facing lemming builds a 6-pixel vertical tile, jumps on top of it, and creates another tile to the right of its peak, and so on...
If this materialises, it would be a great alternative to give lemmings better upwards access!

Haha, I like that you're suggesting this after all that stack-building we did in the new-skills challenge. :crylaugh: ;P

Offline Proxima

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #35 on: March 22, 2020, 02:11:42 pm »
If you've made / seen a suggestion that isn't listed anywhere in the first post, please feel free to bring it up again (and perhaps point me towards the posts discussing it).

Hookshotter seems not to be listed, unless you intended "or another zombie-killing skill" to cover it. But it's primarily a movement skill with a suggestion that we could give it zombie-killing as a side effect.

That said, with the Shimmier and Jumper already giving lemmings much more horizontal mobility, I'm not convinced the Hookshotter would add all that much. Still, it's the only suggestion I've made, so I don't want it to be entirely forgotten 8-)

* * *

I just had a thought. In my Hookshotter proposal, I suggested (just as an idea, not as an essential part of the skill concept) that the lemming should fire in the direction of motion: forwards normally; upwards during the Shimmier's "reach"; diagonally upwards while jumping.

How about applying the same direction-choice mechanic to the Laser Blaster? That would give us multiple directions without requiring another player action, and give the skill a bit more versatility 8-)
« Last Edit: March 22, 2020, 02:21:16 pm by Proxima »

Online IchoTolot

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #36 on: March 22, 2020, 04:07:11 pm »
Alright, here are my 2 cents to the final skill thing. :P

My choice would be a ranged skill, like:

The L2 spear thrower.


Why?

Because no other skill can create terrain over a distance and I think range could be a very powerful tool.

In NL I would vision him throwing his spear without running before throwing. The arc is always the same regardless of updrafts and the spear will stick to the first pirece of terrain it hits.

I see combination possibilities with stoners placed in mid air for example, but I think the range itself is the most useful thing.



I my opinion a ranged skill would provide more variety than a slider for example, as it does share quite a few similarities to other skills as the floater. So I would even go for the bazooka rather than the slider and to be honest even if reading the slider topic and the posts here I don't see too much potential in it.

All in all, I would either aim for a (spear)-thrower or a bazooka/mortar skill and maybe even both to have the possibility for ranged terrain creation and destruction. :)

EDIT: Moved the post as I posted in the wrong topic. :-[

Thinking about it more I can even see combinations with destructive skills that make a tunnel through which the projectile can then fly through.

Offline namida

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #37 on: March 22, 2020, 06:26:41 pm »
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Hookshotter seems not to be listed, unless you intended "or another zombie-killing skill" to cover it. But it's primarily a movement skill with a suggestion that we could give it zombie-killing as a side effect.

Fixed. I'll note that I'm not particularly keen on that idea myself, but I don't see any reason to outright rule it out, so if there's interest it can be considered. The "sets off traps" idea will be too much hassle, as you expected, though I am open to "not affected by traps" (because he slips past too fast, or is slightly off the ground, or just "because that's what the hookshooter does") if this seems to be the preference.

I'm unsure about specifically singling out zombies here. There's nothing about a hookshot that would inherently be dangerous to zombies but nothing else, or that would provide the kind of control needed to only hit zombies. That's not to say the idea is outright rejected, but it does feel a bit weird to me. On the other hand, if it simply kills any lemming in the way, that might have some potential.

Offline Strato Incendus

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #38 on: March 22, 2020, 10:23:32 pm »
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My choice would be a ranged skill, like:

The L2 spear thrower.

Ah, yeah - I forgot that the Spear Thrower is instant, in contrast to the Archer which requires double-clicking (assign the skill, assign the direction). Since namida already ruled out the latter, skills like the Spear Thrower (and I believe also just the regular Thrower, which throws some kind of ball?) had completely fallen out of my radar.

The Spear Thrower would definitely also make more sense as a "Zombie-killer" skill, compared to the Hookshotter! :evil:

However, my main two arguments against it would be:


1) The amount of versatility the Slider promises to add seems hard to beat. While the Slider, as you said, wouldn't add anything completely new (which can also be a benefit, btw, as it's easier to understand for new players and will fit in more organically with the existing skills), the interactions with Jumpers, Shimmiers, Climbers etc. and just the challenges arising from turning the lemming around as needed promise countless amounts of new puzle potential.

2) This "who says A must also say B" logic:

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All in all, I would either aim for a (spear)-thrower or a bazooka/mortar skill and maybe even both to have the possibility for ranged terrain creation and destruction.

Similarly to the upward Digger / downward Builder discussion, this is another case where it would feel weird to have one but not the other. Why just distant construction, but not distant destruction? Or the other way round?

You also seem to already plan to some extent how distant construction and distant destruction could interact:

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Thinking about it more I can even see combinations with destructive skills that make a tunnel through which the projectile can then fly through.

But since we pretty much know there's only going to be a single further skill, this feels a bit like using the "foot in the door" technique on namida, or, as expressed in German, "wanting the entire arm when somebody hands you the little finger". Meaning: Requesting yet another favour after having already received one. ;)



The thing is: For the longest time, I thought new skill additions would just outright end after the Jumper. Now we seem to agree that 20 is a nice number to round out the skill panel, so that is already a pleasant surprise for me, because it means one skill more than expected.

Thus, if I were namida, I'd be hesitant about agreeing to skill suggestions that kind-of have a potential follow-up skill already built-in by design. :P

This is obviously not something I merely say to "discredit" your suggestion, because it affects one of my suggestions (upward Digging / downward Building) equally. ;)

It's just that I have pretty much moved on from this initial suggestion of mine, and even from my personal pet skill that is the Laser Blaster, because other people have successfully convinced me of the Slider's puzzle potential.



Although I must admit that this

Quote
I just had a thought. In my Hookshotter proposal, I suggested (just as an idea, not as an essential part of the skill concept) that the lemming should fire in the direction of motion: forwards normally; upwards during the Shimmier's "reach"; diagonally upwards while jumping.

How about applying the same direction-choice mechanic to the Laser Blaster? That would give us multiple directions without requiring another player action, and give the skill a bit more versatility

sounds quite interesting when it comes to the Laser Blaster. ;)


But if I had to choose, I'd still go with the Slider over the Laser Blaster. The Laser Blaster is so different from anything else that it's more like something a different person than namida might pick up eventually - let's say the introduction of the Jumper sparks Nepster's interest again and he decides to take over after the 20th skill has been implemented. ;) Probably a bad example, I know, because my guess is that Nepster would be much more reluctant (and also slower) than namida when it comes to adding new things in general.

Either way, if NeoLemmix development indeed stops for all eternity, after version 12.11 that adds the 20th skill, if that skill is the Slider, it would also be fine - because the Slider doesn't implicitly "demand" the introduction of yet another skill as its counterpart. Whereas both the upward Digger / downward Builder and the Spear Thrower / Bazooker duality kind of do. ;)
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Online IchoTolot

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #39 on: March 22, 2020, 11:16:58 pm »
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The Spear Thrower would definitely also make more sense as a "Zombie-killer" skill, compared to the Hookshotter!

No interactions with zombies intended in my idea.

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1) The amount of versatility the Slider promises to add seems hard to beat.

I don't think the slider has much versitility to begin with. Also, I just see a ton of edge cases  in the posts that a user has to learn so it's complicated to fully gasp.

But let me explain why the slider mostly provides a ton of redundant interactions that we can already achieve:

1.) A slider + jumper could be subsituted by a glider in a lot of design cases. Updrafts can also help to correct the trajectory.

2.) The turnaround of a slider can be substituted with a walker. In the case of 2 horizontal platforms parallel to each other a glider + cloner does the trick.

3.) If you want to simply get down: Floater/glider/updraft + maybe a walker/cloner

4.) Interruption of a climber. We have the jumper option now. You can design keeping the arc in mind.

5.) Jumper -> sliider: Jumper + floater should achieve similar things.

The only thing that remains is:

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in conjunction with the shimmier it can climb on the underside of platforms

And that's not enough in my opinion. Also:

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transitioning from a Slider to a Shimmier at the bottom of a vertical drop, i.e. at the last possible frame before the Slider lets go of the wall and turns back into a Faller

This is again very precise.

Now you can bring something like this up again:

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Turns out this is indeed standard Shimmier behaviour in L2 for both the Climber and the Rock Climber. And it's extremely useful.

Whenever I want to accomplish something remotely comparable in NeoLemmix, I have to fiddle around a lot, by doing the following:

- send TWO Shimmiers rather than one
- the first one drops at the end of the platform and becomes a Stoner
- the second Shimmier lands on top of the Stoner
- now that second Shimmier needs to turn around somehow (Walker?)
- build a stack to close the gap between Stoner and ceiling / wall
- climb up the stack and then the wall

So in current NeoLemmix, this same outcome requires two Shimmiers, one Stoner, one Walker, one Stacker, and at least one Climber. That's FIVE out of ten possible skill types just to pull of this basic maneuvre!

This is the most extreme case you brought up there and even this can still be accomplished with the current tools.


So you see the slider as described so far is only versitile on the surface. In reality a ton of the interactions are quite redundant and similar to the things we have now.

Also with all the jumper, climber and shimmier stuff we already have, a slider on top of this makes the game a bit too parcury for my liking.


Why not instead add something diffreent this time? ???  We don't have a single ranged skill!

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2) This "who says A must also say B" logic:

I don't think this is a negative at all! The one can exist without the other. I just imagined that the code would be quite similar anyway as the arc should probably be the same for both.

To convince you more in terms of puzzle potential here are some examples for both skills that I just know thought of without much thinking around:

- Stoners/stackers to create wider platforms or removing them.
- Destructive skills with make a path for the projectile to fly through.
- Create platforms for lemmings to fall on. (Thrower)
- Create holes in walls for something like a glider. (Mortar/bazooka)
- Create terrain to shimmy under it. (Thrower)
- Remove terrain to allow a climber/shimmier/jumper to continue. (Mortar/bazooka)
- Cloners give the ability to hit the left and right side.
- ...

The range is again the big seller here, your worker lemming does not need to be at the area of interaction.

And all of this with little to no edge-cases! The projectile has it's certain arc and it effects the first bit of terrain it hits. No updraft interactions or transitioning into other skills required!

Offline Proxima

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #40 on: March 22, 2020, 11:38:37 pm »
But let me explain why the slider mostly provides a ton of redundant interactions that we can already achieve:

... The only thing that remains is:

A big one that you've missed is sliding down a wall to land in an indentation, for example a bomber hole. (Although this could also be achieved with a Thrower, given somewhere suitable to throw from!) And the other thing I really like about the Slider is the way its turning is sometimes an advantage and sometimes a disadvantage, so you can, for example, use a Slider to turn around in a place where there is no other way to do this, and then have to find a way to counteract the turning later on.

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #41 on: March 22, 2020, 11:44:09 pm »
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And the other thing I really like about the Slider is the way its turning is sometimes an advantage and sometimes a disadvantage

The way I see this is that the level can always be designed that not turning is sometimes an advantage and sometimes a disadvantage as well. The direction can always be designed around for.


Offline Strato Incendus

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #42 on: March 22, 2020, 11:51:24 pm »
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1.) A slider + jumper could be subsituted by a glider in a lot of design cases. Updrafts can also help to correct the trajectory.

2.) The turnaround of a slider can be substituted with a walker. In the case of 2 horizontal platforms parallel to each other a glider + cloner does the trick.

3.) If you want to simply get down: Floater/glider/updraft + maybe a walker/cloner

4.) Interruption of a climber. We have the jumper option now. You can design keeping the arc in mind.

5.) Jumper -> sliider: Jumper + floater should achieve similar things.

Puzzle potential is not only so much in things a skill can do, but often even more so in the things it explicitly can't do. Just like with the permanent-skill-removal object, people seem to start out by thinking about the new upsides a skill has, and how frequently those would come up - rather than about the drawbacks and how you can build around those.

Of course a Floater can get you down easily - in fact, often too easily. In the past people have repeatedly pointed out how they were having trouble implementing the Floater into puzzles in clever ways, because it's just so limited in what it does. Let's pretend the Floater didn't exist in NeoLemmix (and had never existed in the first place), i.e. it would have to prove its value standing completely on its own ground - would we bother adding it? A skill that basically does nothing else but "survive splat-height drops"? ;)

The Slider can only go down in specific places. Finding those places or creating them in the first place can be an interesting part of a puzzle. The most challenging puzzles are often about how to accomplish a thing that's pretty commonplace by itself: Containing the crowd, isolating a worker lemming, surviving a drop, or simply turning a lemming around just the right number of times.

And this is the other big selling point of the Slider: His distinctive way of turning lemmings around.

Since he usually looks the other way than all remaining Fallers - and does so by default, rather than requiring a Walker / Cloner assignment every time, as it is the case in your examples - he can be useful to isolate a worker lemming from a non-contained crowd. This way, he can be a powerful tool for very challenging flow-control puzzles. But rather than the Walker, which is often regarded as overpowered, you can't simply turn him around anywhere - you need to use the terrain to your advantage, find a drop where you can turn the Slider around, and only there it will work.
Other times, the fact that he turns around will backfire, just like the fact that the Climber goes over every straight wall. That is also usually an advantage, but it can be a disadvantage at times (again, one of the main points raised in favour of the permanent-skill-removal object).

I know some people regard the Slider in its core applications as nothing but a "weaker Floater". And usually, this raises the question: "Why would we want something that's just a weaker version of an existing skill?" But I think I've sufficiently shown how this is not such a clear-cut case as Swimmer vs. Kayaker (the Kayaker is strictly worse than the Swimmer, because it's single-use, and there is no situation in which drowning is better than being a Swimmer - unless you explicitly need to kill a lemming to prevent it from doing some kind of damage, but by that logic, any "bad" skill good be good :evil: ).

Rather, Slider vs. Floater is like Stacker vs. Stoner, Platformer vs. Builder: A huge part about the NeoLemmix Platformer is that it never gains height, no matter how hard you try. This is of course an advantage when it's applied to the type of level it was designed for - building under low ceilings without the lemming bumping his head. But more often than not, it is used in levels that only provide Platformers, no Builders, but still require you to gain height some other way. In those levels, the Platformer is clearly disadvantageous compared to the Builder - but that is precisely what creates the challenge! ;)

For example, your point 5) only holds up when the lemming needs to jump across a gap in order to be able to float down safely. If there is terrain connecting the position where the lemming drops and where he's supposed to land, he can simply float down directly and walk, no jump required.

However, if you don't have a Floater, only a rough cliff under which there is terrain at splat height, the Slider will not be able to get down there directly. But let's say on the other side of that cliff is a straight wall. The lemming can now jump over to the other side and start sliding from there. It's basically like "one-way arrows for splat heights" :thumbsup: .

A Glider obviously can solve both scenarios on its own. But that is precisely the reason why a Glider is often too powerful for such level scenarios - at least on higher ranks. ;) Just like Builders can be too powerful in levels that are about height-gaining (--> challenging levels will provide only Platformers instead), and Platformers can be too powerful and levels that require construction under low ceilings (--> challenging levels will provide Builders instead).

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To convince you more in terms of puzzle potential here are some examples for both skills that I just know thought of without much thinking around:

- Stoners/stackers to create wider platforms or removing them.
- Destructive skills with make a path for the projectile to fly through.
- Create platforms for lemmings to fall on. (Thrower)
- Create holes in walls for something like a glider. (Mortar/bazooka)
- Create terrain to shimmy under it. (Thrower)
- Remove terrain to allow a climber/shimmier/jumper to continue. (Mortar/bazooka)
- Cloners give the ability to hit the left and right side.

This list, although it includes some nice ideas, is somewhat "dishonest" or at least misleading, because you put both distant destruction and distant creation into one list, either assuming that we will have both eventually, or depicting the puzzle potential of the individual skill (meaning only either distant destruction or creation) as more vast than it actually is. :P

Apart from that, I just want to say: Creating terrain with the Spear Thrower to shimmy under it sounds very precise ;) . Especially since one spear is probably not going to be very long, so you'll need to stick several spears into each other back-to-back. And the Shimmier is very sensitive to height differences - any deviation of two or more pixels between two spears would make him quit. Thus, I can only see this work if the Spear Thrower always throws at a straight horizontal line. That would basically make him a Platformer with range.
Except that the spear would be thrown over the lemming's shoulder, i.e. it would not land at the height of his feet. So he couldn't actually walk onto a path created by his own spears.
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Online IchoTolot

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #43 on: March 23, 2020, 12:21:19 am »
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The Slider can only go down in specific places. Finding those places or creating them in the first place can be an interesting part of a puzzle. The most challenging puzzles are often about how to accomplish a thing that's pretty commonplace by itself: Containing the crowd, isolating a worker lemming, surviving a drop, or simply turning a lemming around just the right number of times.

I bet you can also achieve that with the other skills. ;)

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And this is the other big selling point of the Slider: His distinctive way of turning lemmings around.
Since he usually looks the other way than all remaining Fallers - and does so by default, rather than requiring a Walker / Cloner assignment every time, as it is the case in your examples - he can be useful to isolate a worker lemming from a non-contained crowd. This way, he can be a powerful tool for very challenging flow-control puzzles. But rather than the Walker, which is often regarded as overpowered, you can't simply turn him around anywhere - you need to use the terrain to your advantage, find a drop where you can turn the Slider around, and only there it will work.
Other times, the fact that he turns around will backfire, just like the fact that the Climber goes over every straight wall. That is also usually an advantage, but it can be a disadvantage at times (again, one of the main points raised in favour of the permanent-skill-removal object).

There are way more than enough ways to turn lemmings around! We don't need yet another one! Again, nothing against my argument of redundancy.

Another example that is very fresh: Jump against a wall instead of sliding. 

Also, by level design itself you can often create the cases where turning is an advantage or disadvantage anyway.

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But I think I've sufficiently shown how this is not such a clear-cut case as Swimmer vs. Kayaker (the Kayaker is strictly worse than the Swimmer, because it's single-use, and there is no situation in which drowning is better than being a Swimmer - unless you explicitly need to kill a lemming to prevent it from doing some kind of damage, but by that logic, any "bad" skill good be good :evil: ).

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I know some people regard the Slider in its core applications as nothing but a "weaker Floater". And usually, this raises the question: "Why would we want something that's just a weaker version of an existing skill?" But I think I've sufficiently shown how this is not such a clear-cut case as Swimmer vs. Kayaker (the Kayaker is strictly worse than the Swimmer, because it's single-use, and there is no situation in which drowning is better than being a Swimmer - unless you explicitly need to kill a lemming to prevent it from doing some kind of damage, but by that logic, any "bad" skill good be good :evil: ).

I just simply don't want a similar version of skills we already have. The 20th skill slot should not be wasted for things we can already achieve. That is my point.

Why add a similar or weaker version of a thing we already have when we can have something new and different!


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For example, your point 5) only holds up when the lemming needs to jump across a gap in order to be able to float down safely. If there is terrain connecting the position where the lemming drops and where he's supposed to land, he can simply float down directly and walk, no jump required.

Then don't design the level with connecting terrain - or put a trap in the way. :P 

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However, if you don't have a Floater, only a rough cliff under which there is terrain at splat height, the Slider will not be able to get down there directly. But let's say on the other side of that cliff is a straight wall. The lemming can now jump over to the other side and start sliding from there. It's basically like "one-way arrows for splat heights"

Again, put a fire in the way on the rough cliff side and the floater needs to jump as well.


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This list, although it includes some nice ideas, is somewhat "dishonest" or at least misleading, because you put both distant destruction and distant creation into one list, either assuming that we will have both eventually, or depicting the puzzle potential of the individual skill (meaning only either distant destruction or creation) as more vast than it actually is.

I just wanted to give quick examples for both cases. Don't just mark it as dishonest. And these things are just the ones I immidiatly thought of.

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Apart from that, I just want to say: Creating terrain with the Spear Thrower to shimmy under it sounds very precise ;) . Especially since one spear is probably not going to be very long, so you'll need to stick several spears into each other back-to-back. And the Shimmier is very sensitive to height differences - any deviation of two or more pixels between two spears would make him quit. Thus, I can only see this work if the Spear Thrower always throws at a straight horizontal line. That would basically make him a Platformer with range.
Except that the spear would be thrown over the lemming's shoulder, i.e. it would not land at the height of his feet. So he couldn't actually walk onto a path created by his own spears.

1.) The arc is always the same so you can get used to it and rely on it.

2.) We have skill shadows. It will be just like a builder skill shadow. The needed precision is up to the level designer. If the level is well designed then the throw will probably have a bit of leeway.

3.) We can make the spear a bit longer so that back to back is not required very often and even that will be easy when assigning them back to back.

4.) Not every shimmier way needs to be very long. A few throwers should be enough to implement the trick. Otherwise it is leaning to general bad level design anyway.

Offline WillLem

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Re: [DISC][PLAYER] The final new skill
« Reply #44 on: March 23, 2020, 01:42:47 am »
If the permanent-skill-canceller object gets implemented, it would likely make the Slider even more useful.

That said, I'm fairly open to all ideas about the 20th skill. I think I'd be happy with pretty much any of the skills that have been discussed so far, as long as it's bringing at least one or two new possibilities to the table.

Slider - non-permanent way to get down from a height; possibility to rescue a Climber that's going off-course; possibility to transfer to/from Shimmier; possibility to separate a worker

Bazookerer - possibility to destroy terrain from distance; can use as a non-fatal bomber replacement; possibility to kill zombies

Spear-Thrower - possibility to create terrain from distance; possibility to kill zombies

Lazer-Blaster - possibility to destroy terrain vertically upwards; possibility to kill zombies (?)

Runner - possibility to separate a worker; possibility to increase Jumper range

All exciting possibilities. Have I forgotten any other skills being discussed at the mo?