Yet another complete rework of the mechanics will be available in the next release (I’m on a roll!). In general, what I am trying to do with these changes are to diversify the gameplay of TGGW by incorporating the gameplay of classic RPG classes (warrior, thief, mage, monk, ranger etc.). In previous posts I have changed mechanics to be able to play monk-like characters and dual-wield rangers. The following mechanics reflects the game style of a thief/rogue.

Trap Checks

In the current release, a trap will always trigger when you or a monster step on it (or when using a door/container which is trapped). In the next release you will make trap check to see if the trap actually triggers. The trap check is a derived attribute that uses a combination of your ‘light’ and your ‘noise’ attribute. The ‘noise’ attribute represent your noise level as well as your weight, grace and general bulkiness (a character with high noise typically wear heavy armour and weapons and have a harder time avoiding traps, while a character with low noise represents someone who moves carefully and deliberately). So the higher the noise, the higher risk of triggering a trap. Your ‘light’ attribute also generally reflects how well you see and helps to react in time before a trap triggers (a character with a high light attribute carries torches or other vision-aiding gear, enabling them to see a trap just before it triggers). Your trap check then is 50 + 10*(light – noise)% with percentages tapered off when under 10% or over 90% (it is resolved in the same way as a melee attack, you could see it as an attack ‘light’ vs. ‘noise’ instead of ‘melee’ vs. ‘block’). When you start the game, your trap check will be at 50 + 10*(3-7) = 10%. If you want to improve on that you will have to find better light or be less noisy, or both. I am very satisfied with this solution since it makes the light and noise attributes more important, and it makes a lot of sense logically: it will be more difficult to avoid traps in dark rooms or when you are burdened with heavy armour.

In the bottom left corner we can see that a starting character is not very good at avoiding traps.

In the bottom left corner we can see that a starting character is not very good at avoiding traps.

There are a few more adjustments to this rule: you get a penalty if you are confused and a bonus if you detect traps (this means that detecting traps now also helps you avoid them). Monsters that steps on traps will have to do the same checks.

If the trap check fails, the trap triggers and affects the victim just like before.

Setting Traps

If the trap check succeeds, the trap won’t trigger, but it is exposed. An exposed trap becomes an item that you can pick up and then you can place the trap for your enemies instead. You set a trap by standing where you want the trap placed and then using it from the inventory.

Setting a trap comes with two caveats. First, you cannot set a trap if you are seen by a sufficiently intelligent monster (in game terms: a monster of the category ‘Humanoid’). Second, there is a small risk that the trap goes off. Originally I planned to make another (easier) trap check for trap placement, but then I realised that you would simply remove your noisy armour before placing a trap and thereby encouraging very tedious behaviour. Instead the risk for the trap going off is now a constant percentage (to be determined).


About to set a poison needle trap.

Active Traps

When you set a trap it becomes active. An active trap that you have set is harmless to you, but it cannot be picked up. Monsters cannot see your traps and if they step on one, they will have to do a trap check (just like you) or the trap will trigger on them. If the monster succeeds the check, the trap will become inactive again, and you can pick it up. All your traps will become inactive when you rest.

The trap check for monsters have interesting consequences: Small, light monsters like worms have very low noise and are very unlikely to trigger traps,  while large, armoured monsters with poor vision, like trolls,  will almost always trigger them. Note that both have their benefits: while it’s obviously good that large monsters trigger traps, it’s actually also good if a low-noise monster steps on a trap without triggering it since this exposes the trap and you can collect it.

Other Trap Changes

Since the implementation of traps is completely changed, there are some small other differences to traps, which may or may not be noticeable:

  • Traps can no longer be blocked (swinging logs could be blocked before)
  • Traps no longer scale up in damage when you go deeper, all damage from traps is fixed.
  • Traps now have a rarity like all other items, all traps had an equal chance of appearing before.


When introducing new mechanics, there’s always a risk of breaking the game balance. The new mechanics implies that a character with a noise attribute of 0 don’t have to worry much about traps. However, a character with 0 noise (although unusual) is already very powerful 1. In addition, traps used to be the worst threat to stealthy characters, which is no longer the case.

To balance this, inanimate monsters no longer sleep. All undead and most mindless monsters are inanimate. This is justified both in terms of balance and in terms of logic. I think this is a good trade-off since many of the most dangerous end-game monsters are inanimate. This means that a zero-noise character would still be very powerful, but would have to find a way around inanimate monsters. In general trap-setting will be a very important element for a stealthy character (especially towards the end), and for them traps becomes resources instead of obstacles.

I will have to play some more before I can really tell if this is balanced or not, and more adjustments may be needed. But this is the current plan.

1. I am aware of at least two wins of 0-noise characters: the first one was Zennaris, and the second one was Kyzrati. I recommend checking out Kyzrati’s excellent account of winning with a stealth based character on reddit.


  1. You ARE on a roll! Sounds like a nice modification overall, and it will definitely make the stealth approach require a more adaptive strategy–a good thing, since it was certainly fun, if a little boring (i.e. from experience I can say that once you’ve won with a stealth character once, there’s not much point in doing it again).

    Traps were just a huge annoyance before, and now they’re so much more an interactive part of the game. Great move.

    1. Yes, and since most of the few reported wins used stealth it is a hint that it is a slightly over-powered strategy (I do not in anyway mean to diminish your win though, as I said, it’s still one of the very few reported ones!). Hopefully these changes will make it interesting to attempt a stealthy character again 🙂

      1. For sure! Really I think stealth has been by far the easiest way to win, since you can circumvent almost everything that’s deadly. Very cheap, enough so that I don’t consider it a real win myself other than the fact that it enabled me to see some end game content more easily 😉

        I’d say that part of the game was pretty unbalanced before, and naturally players will attempt to take advantage of these things while a game is in development. The changes should perform well in terms of bringing the stealth strategy difficulty curve in line with the others (though I’m guessing it’ll still be one of the easier ways to win).

        1. yeah, you are probably right. I have never played (another) roguelike where you could just walk right past most monsters…

          I think this should balance it without making 0-noise useless (you can still ignore about 50% of monsters).

      2. Yeah, low noise condition is overpowered compared to other requirements for a winning Strategy. So many items decrease noise, and their upgrades are comparatively cheap. I try not use it these days and focus on other ways to win.
        Like I was having that very promising “noisy” character with a lot of nice items and buffs when the error occurred –
        I just tried to sell some magma stones to the food merchant, when warnings started appearing. I had full inventory when I addressed the merchant, but I didn’t buy anything from him that time, only sell. When I sold all magma stones, I automatically got some “0” item from the merchant and the game crashed.
        I tried to restore my save and drop some items before talking to merchant, but this leads to the same result. I got “0” from him again and the game crashed. What can be the problem? Did I sell him too much? Did I buy from him too much? (I bought all his goods before) There is the save file if you want to see this –
        Just trying to help.

        1. Hey Zennaris!
          Hopefully with the new changes it will be interesting to try a stealthy character again!

          Thank you very much for your report, this was unknown to me. I have no idea what the problem can be, I will try to fix it!

  2. All these updates are very exciting! One thing I want to mention, in regards to Light, I find it is sometimes advantageous to have a lower light level. For example having Light at 1 means ranged enemies cannot attack me, I can sneak past eyes and turrets, etc. Thematically it also makes sense for stealthy characters to want less light to be less noticeable. Just something to consider. Looking forward to the next release.

    1. Yes exactly! It is my intention that it should be advantageous to have low light for stealthy characters, and this is in direct conflict of trap usage. Therefore a stealthy character would have to make a choice which one he finds more important, so there is some variety among stealth-builds.

      Low-light will actually be even more beneficial now when more monsters are sleeping. They might not sleep, but with low light they might not see you anyway.

  3. Sorry, i didnt know where to post general comments, so i just hijacked the latest post.

    I discovered this game today and dived right in, i love to check out the mechanics of different roguelikes. I must say i really like the design of items in this game.
    But something didnt feel right, normally i would learn from each death and get better, but somehow i was unable to chase down fleeing enemies.
    They always seem to trick and kill me, same problem with ranged enemies, i didnt understand what i was supposed to do.

    I was really getting frustrated, then i finally realized what was going on. I was trying to corner enemies, not realizing that corners dont exist in normal rooms.

    I made a picture to showcase how non-diagonal movement warps the space
    Rooms that look square are actually circles.

    This game is really quite different from all the others, different tactics are required, throw away everything you think you know about roguelikes from playing other games.

    I think you created a fantastic, unique roguelike.
    I cant wait to see the next (and future) versions 🙂

    I hope you are proud of makeing me almost go insane while chasing dogs in circles :p

    1. Hey Sergio!
      Thank you very much for commenting and I am really happy you like the game!

      Very good observation about the circle rooms. This is a consequence of that I’m not using diagonals and the whole game uses taxicab geometry. This also explains the shape of the field of vision that I explained in a previous post.

      When it’s not possible to chase down monsters, in general the best way is to just chase them away to some dead-end room and close the door, but I guess you have figured that out by now 🙂

      Thanks for waiting patiently, the next release will be one of the biggest updates I’ve done with a lot of new mechanics and content. I don’t yet have a date for it though.

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