I have worked on the next version of TGGW in silence for a while. Without spoiling too much, I have a lot of plans that I’m excited for in the next version, most of which has been implemented already. I am in the process of testing thoroughly what to include and not. The first thing I want to talk about is a fairly minor thing, but that has a lot of impact on gameplay.
The game currently defines your character to either be “exploring” or in “combat”. You are in “combat” as long as you can see or hear hostile monsters. The main difference between the modes is that a lot of actions are restricted while in “combat”; you can’t rest, take twisty stairs, or equip big items. Another thing is that you can’t discover or disarm traps while in combat.
The problem with combat is that the game is not very smart about it. It treats you as in combat even if monsters are fleeing, or immobile (because they can still attack you from a distance), or even when you hear monsters behind a door. This can lead to undesired behaviour such as “waiting out” a monster behind a door so that you can rest, or take the stairs.
Delaying instead of forbidding
The explore/combat mode categorization will not change in the next version, only its rules. In next version, you will be able to do anything you can do while exploring, but if you do any of the things that were forbidden in combat mode you will instead be prompted to confirm: “Really? There are monsters nearby!”. If you say yes to this, there will be a delay period of around 20 turns that works as follows:
- You will not be able to take any actions during the delay, but monsters will.
- If you get attacked or take damage during the delay, it is interrupted and you can take actions again.
- The turns in the delay does not count toward your total number of turns spent.
If the delay was not interrupted after the 20-ish turns, you will go ahead and do the action you were prompted for. If the delay was interrupted, your intended action is cancelled but you regain control of your character.
The consequence is that you as the player can make the decision if it is risky or not. For example, if you happen to know that the monster behind the door can’t open it, it is safe to take the twisty stairs or rest without getting ambushed or attacked from afar.
The delay happens only if you are in combat mode, so no prompt or extra turns pass if the status window says “explore”. Items that used to say “cannot be used while in combat” now instead say “it takes time to use”:
Since combat mode is going to be less restrictive, opening containers (such as chests, sacks, bushes etc) is also now something that is going to take time. This means that you typically have to clear the room you are in before opening the containers (which is something I find more interesting and flavourful), or just go ahead and open them if everyone in there is fleeing or immobile.