Official development blog

Category Archives: Design

Adjustable Difficulty

cogmind_player_skill_distribution_curve

Roguelikes are notoriously difficult. In this way they’re really no different from games of old, across numerous genres, which many players were far from guaranteed of completing. It’s only today that roguelikes have become more uniquely associated with difficulty because the market around them has changed so much! There will always be an additional layer […]

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Map Prefabs, in Depth

cogmind_garrison_prefab_sample

An increasingly common approach to roguelike map development today is to have content partially determined by so-called “prefabs,” with layouts which are hand-made rather than fully procedurally generated. Doing so gives a designer more control over the experience, or portions of it at least, without completely supplanting the advantages of roguelike unpredictability. Prefabs are a […]

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Improving the Hacking Experience

cogmind_manual_hacking_mark_undiscovered_lore

The terrible curse of gamedev is that it’s really hard to finish a game when there’s always something that could be better. The great thing about gamedev is that there’s always something that could be better, meaning room for more new features and content to make players happy :D The previous round of major UI […]

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Ability/Effect Systems and Scripted Content

cogmind_SA_sample_script

While most roguelikes include basic attack and defense mechanics as a core player activity, the real challenges are introduced when gameplay moves beyond bump-combat and sees the player juggling a more limited amount of unique resources in the form of special abilities, magic, consumables, and other effect-producing items. Just as they challenge the player, however, […]

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Tutorials and Help: Easing Players into the Game

cogmind_tutorial_breakdown

With a generally lower barrier to add content compared to other games, roguelikes have a tendency to be packed with features and mechanics, and while that doesn’t characterize every roguelike out there (notably 7DRLs and other quick hobby projects), there is an important need to help new players overcome the initial barriers to learning a […]

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