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Author Topic: What do you find fun about Cogmind?  (Read 1585 times)

greymedicine

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What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« on: December 12, 2015, 10:48:48 PM »

This is a serious, not-intending-to-be-a-downer thread. :)

I've put 5-10 hours into the game and I'm just not enjoying myself. I love roguelikes (clocked a few thousand hours in DCSS) but this one just isn't clicking. I don't like wanting to run from every fight. I don't like my stuff getting so easily destroyed, particularly when 'stuff' is what defines my dude. I don't like having to fight scavengers for dropped parts.

What keeps you coming back to Cogmind?
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CormacMccarthy91

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2015, 11:23:11 PM »

This is why I stopped playing and started playing DCSS and Cataclysm DDA. I hate the feeling this game gives me of being fragile and scared. It just takes too much work to get anything done. I want to put treads on and a ton of guns and be able to tank my way to floor 5 but thats not remotely possible it seems.
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Kyzrati

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2015, 11:29:26 PM »

While I'm hoping other players will share their own perspectives on this, being quite familiar with a lot of player opinions on the game I can offer a generalized response:

The idea that you frequently replace your parts is the core mechanic of the game, and is what makes it a fresh experience compared to other roguelikes, at least where mechanics are concerned.

It's unfortunate that it can't be the roguelike for everyone, being such a huge departure from the idea of gradually building a character that truly represents your progress via more permanent qualities like stats and equipment. The latter is what we have in nearly every other roguelike out there, but to create the kind of experience that Cogmind is intended to be, that just won't work here.

I've discussed this on the blog a few times, and I know that it has turned off a couple players who want more permanence. That said, regarding your specific comments I can offer some advice:

Quote
I don't like wanting to run from every fight.
You don't have to run! On my good runs to the end of the game (and I'm sure those of the other experience combat players) I literally destroy every single hostile I meet. It's a question of using the most effective tactics. However, I can see that if you're afraid of losing parts then your first reaction to encounters might be to flee, which is I guess what you're referring to here?

(I assume we're talking about combat here, because if you're playing a fast/stealth build then you should be wanting to escape pursuers, or avoid them completely in the first place :P)

Also: The frequency of part loss goes down significantly with experience.

Quote
I don't like having to fight scavengers for dropped parts.
Are you taking a potshot at each one before they steal stuff? One shot is all it takes (it's worth considering doing this in the middle of a pitched battle if there's stuff you want lying around). Also, in a future release you'll be able to get all those parts back even if you don't immediately track them down, as well as use other methods to stop them from annoying you :).

If you're bent on keeping your parts as they are (though really once you're moving through the world more quickly, you'll want to be dropping stuff left and right to upgrade!), there are strategies for that, such as relying heavily on armor and shields.

I suggest taking a look at some of the strategy guides for tips on how to improve, and once you can start reliably reaching the mid-game the experience will start to fall into place as your game changes significantly. As a number of players have mentioned before, you sort of have to forget/ignore everything you've learned in playing other roguelikes in order to do well at Cogmind. I've heard from players who have been big fans of DCSS, NetHack, ADOM and other classics for years, and also really enjoy Cogmind, but they were getting owned repeatedly until they were able to "unlearn" a lot of practices.

I want to put treads on and a ton of guns and be able to tank my way to floor 5 but thats not remotely possible it seems.
It's possible, I do it all the time as it's the way I prefer to play, too :P. In one of my weekly seed streams about a month ago I tanked all the way from the beginning to the final floor like that, and didn't lose a large portion of my parts even once, until I finally went down because I couldn't locate the exit to the surface. One viewer said "it looks so easy when you do it" which is exactly why I wanted to show that was possible.

Next time I stream I'll also be starting from the beginning and do an even heavier tank build. It takes about an hour to reach the half-way point of the game (playing + talking...).
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Josh Ge, Developer - Dev Blog | @GridSageGames

Kyzrati

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #3 on: December 12, 2015, 11:30:52 PM »

I should add: All that said, it still can't be the game for everyone :P

Edit: Perhaps more importantly to those who want to like the game, it's continuing to evolve and get easier with every release (to accommodate what will be more difficult outlying areas and situations to come!), so rather than forge through now, you can always wait and come back later when the main complex will be at its easiest.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2015, 03:26:30 AM by Kyzrati »
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Josh Ge, Developer - Dev Blog | @GridSageGames

zxc

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #4 on: December 13, 2015, 08:48:45 AM »

This is a serious, not-intending-to-be-a-downer thread. :)

I've put 5-10 hours into the game and I'm just not enjoying myself. I love roguelikes (clocked a few thousand hours in DCSS) but this one just isn't clicking. I don't like wanting to run from every fight. I don't like my stuff getting so easily destroyed, particularly when 'stuff' is what defines my dude. I don't like having to fight scavengers for dropped parts.

What keeps you coming back to Cogmind?

I've also played a sickening amount of DCSS, which happens to be my favourite game. My favourite part about Cogmind is when I've got most of the key items in a stealth build and I'm able to carefully weave paths through the complex without disturbing enemies, loot more items and ascend further. Like a SpEn of Ash but with less stabbing and more ninja. Few roguelikes do even a half decent job of stealth and Cogmind goes much further than that. You also lose very few items this way unless you make mistakes, get caught in a stasis trap, or are forced to fly through enemies. I've just reached this point in a current game where I've taken a screenshot (notice how none of my items are damaged):
Spoiler (click to show/hide)

It sounds like you're trying to fight your way through. I'm more of a fan of the stealthy approach but I know a lot of people prefer combat, like Happylisk, Decker, and Adraius (not to mention Kyzrati himself). Taking damage is unavoidable that way and losing/replacing parts is simply a fact of life. This is extremely different from most roguelikes where your power level is more stable and continually growing over time.

Your job is to minimise the damage you take while maximising the loot you find. Don't get too attached to your parts, especially in the first few floors, as there are always better items to be found as you progress. Weapons in particular become much stronger as you progress. Simply put on what you've got, destroy robots and take their items if they're better than your current gear or have more integrity.

I sure agree about civilian robots clearing items from the floor - it's super annoying and nasty, but it does make the complex feel more like a 'living world'.

I hate the feeling this game gives me of being fragile and scared. It just takes too much work to get anything done. I want to put treads on and a ton of guns and be able to tank my way to floor 5 but thats not remotely possible it seems.

You're definitely not fragile (at least your core integrity isn't), and if you're scared, that's a good thing. You can totally tank your way to -5. If it's hard, well that's a good thing too. There's a lot of info floating about on this forum and discussions around how to do just that. E.g. http://www.gridsagegames.com/forums/index.php?topic=267.0 is a long and interesting discussion with all sorts of ideas on how best to approach combat, including a lot of thoughts on exactly this topic of 'item attrition'. Check out Happylisk's excellent combat articles as well: http://www.gridsagegames.com/forums/index.php?topic=277.0 and http://www.gridsagegames.com/forums/index.php?topic=338.0
« Last Edit: December 13, 2015, 09:42:12 AM by zxc »
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SquigglyJ

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2015, 12:25:49 PM »

Favorite parts of cogmind is the theme, the lore makes sense so to speak (for example npcs going about their business, not some random goblin and other random monsters all attacking just you). I also prefer no leveling system in roguelikes because otherwise the game just feels too grindy.
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Happylisk

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #6 on: December 16, 2015, 06:41:43 AM »

I found I didn't appreciate cogmind until I got a handle on the mechanics and could reliably get to the late midgame (Factory -4).  When you don't know proper strategy (when to fight and how to build your bot) and tactics (how to fight), firefights are scary bouts of attrition that always seem to screw you.  Once you have a solid build and understand why it's solid, this game is really, really fun.  During the alpha tournie I called this the best roguelike I've played and I stand by that. 

I'm going to continue working on my guide over my xmas break.  Hopefully strategy info helps new players dive into the game. 
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StrixNebulosa

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #7 on: May 29, 2016, 02:21:01 AM »

I've only played two games of Cogmind so far, but here's my two cents on the matter - upfront I enjoy the lore and aesthetic, as playing as a robot is very, very good. There are so few good sci-fi-themed roguelikes out there that finding a good one is a diamond in the rough.

But, more about the gameplay: I really, really enjoy the constant sense of danger. This isn't a game where you can set up a character and then get rolling (and thus complacent, and careless, and that's what kills most of my characters in other roguelikes) but instead one where you're stuck at level one, so to speak. You can get better gear, and learn how to play better, but there's no flat "I am a death machine" sense. At least so far - I imagine I could gradually build a massive armored tank with all kinds of guns/heat sinks in the backpack, but the threat seems to scale up incredibly high to match that.

Mind you, my playstyle is generally too aggressive to be skilled, but heck, I'm having fun.
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biomatter

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Re: What do you find fun about Cogmind?
« Reply #8 on: May 29, 2016, 06:05:23 AM »

I struggle for the lore. I will agree that the game can seem terrifying at times, but once you get decent (and it takes a really long time to get there) you start to develop nerves of steel. When you begin to know what you need to happen, it will happen. I do this all to learn more about the game - that is my end-goal.
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