Nowadays there are a lot of multiplayer roguelite, roguelikelike and just RPG games with roguelike elements. It’s great to have wide diversity in the genres, but at the same time we should remember about roguelike core concepts. It’s very hard to be able to port truly roguelikish spirit from singleplayer games (where player is fair to himself and in most cases enjoying gameplay without munchkin’s powergaming); in multiplayer roguelike games there are a lot of competition between players and it’s important to prevent unfair gameplay mechanics which players unfortunately will always use despite of everything…
So.. Tangaria is not just a variant of (PW)MAngband, but actually presents multiplayer roguelike concept, which could be implemented in any multiplayer game which claim itself as roguelike. Key features of truly multiplayer roguelikish experience:
– permadeath mode only. Traditional roguelike experience. Having non-permadeth game mode teaches players to play the game in a wrong, not roguelikish way; and most of ‘everlasting’ players can’t get into permadeath mode after they got used to EZPZ gameplay.
– one character per account. It’s forbidden to have more than one account per person to prevent cheating (transfer of money and items without anything in return between characters).
– disconnected stairs. Up/down staircases are ‘not connected’ between levels to prevent stair-scumming. Other way players will cheat by staying at the same staircase to roll a ‘nice’ level.
– limited range of telepathy & detection: exploration matters! The game should be rebalanced to smaller overview as it proceeds in semi real-time.
– brackets system – restrictions for entering dungeons upon reaching a certain level (max. level limit which prevents grinding low-level mobs for items and exp).
– food matters. Actually it should be applied to any object in roguelike game – if there is a certain element of gameplay – it should be important and influence gameplay; if it’s not – it should be removed (or better – revamped, as removing stuff which already exists in roguelike game is in 99% cases – bad idea). In most *bands food doesn’t play an important role, you just need to do not forget to buy it at NPC store from time to time. In Tangaria it’s different – food is an expensive and rare resource; you have to look for it and have to ‘hurry’ to find something to eat, or you will die from hunger. It makes gameplay more fast-paced and hardcore.
– no high experience penalty races. The player shouldn’t get an advantage if he spends x*n more time on boring grind with powerful races. It’s not roguelikish approach. Player’s skill should matter, not the time he grinded. So existing powerful high exp penalty races should be rebalanced, if any.
Optional features (good for *band based roguelikes):
– no selling to NPC. It removes boring grind from the game; in return, you get extra gold in the dungeon and could trade with other players.
Tangaria’s development goals
First goal is to enrich traditional Angband gameplay with Nethack‘s spirit – various random gameplay events; at the same time to do not overburden game with spoiler-based Nethack’s stuff (like hatching eggs, imba polymorph control, altar grind, etc) as players should focus exploration on actual gameplay, not on reading the spoilers via code. And of course, Tangaria is not limited only by Nethack’s influence, it’s also inspired by:
- Roguelikish stuff from DCSS, ToME, ADOM and other great rlg’s;
- Game world immersion from MUD’s (aka text MMORPGs);
- Attention to details from DnD;
- Sandbox ideas from Ultima Online and some other MMORPG’s.
Tangaria is following classic fantasy traditions and got it’s own unique fantasy world, though it’s heavily based at J.R.R.Tolkien – it’s not JRRT-canonic and do not intend to be so. Also it’s influenced a lot by DnD worlds, but got totally different approach to many things; eg orcs are not just stupid evil creatures, but actually just another living beings who want to have their own place for a calm life in the world (and no, it’s not warcraft’s orcs with green skin.. although some of them could have greenish tint).
Storyline of the game could be found there: https://tangaria.com/world