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%$& teleport trap!
May 16, 2009 6:13 PM   Subscribe

Wayfarer is a 3D rogue-like developed using processing by Ben Hemmendinger.

It's currently in alpha and progression is limited to upgrading equipment for the moment (no xp/level gain), but still plenty addictive. Downloadable/offline version planned but not yet available. Some performance issues, especially when the auto save kicks in.
posted by juv3nal (37 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
Fans of rougelikes should like this fantastic monthly column at GameSetWatch: @Play.
posted by xorry at 6:20 PM on May 16, 2009 [1 favorite]


This looks like a lot of fun. There goes my weekend..
posted by xorry at 6:24 PM on May 16, 2009


"Do you trust this certificate?"

um, no.
posted by toroi at 6:25 PM on May 16, 2009 [2 favorites]


xorry: I hear the author of that is charming, talented, suitable for being given all kinds of money and candy, and is also a real catch for an attractive young woman (who also happens to like roguelikes).

On Wayfarer, I just found out about it today. Going to try it in a bit. More news at 11.
posted by JHarris at 6:28 PM on May 16, 2009 [4 favorites]


Wait, what?

before i go check this out, I have to say that I'm going to be really disappointed if all of the graphics in this game aren't 3D representations of ASCII characters. I thought that was the whole point of calling yourself a 'rouge-like'. Along with the fact that the game is impossible* to beat.

* yes, I know that it's technically possible.
posted by ArgentCorvid at 6:41 PM on May 16, 2009


For about 2 seconds, I thought I was going to start hearing the theme from Ultima III. Here's hoping for some more rain tomorrow...
posted by jquinby at 6:45 PM on May 16, 2009


Why is it trying to create directories on my hard drive? Why is it making my Vista Sidebar go all wonky and flashy?


"Do you trust this certificate?"

um, no.
posted by toroi at 9:25 PM on May 16 [+] [!]


Starting to think I should have said "no" also.
posted by sidereal at 6:51 PM on May 16, 2009


before i go check this out, I have to say that I'm going to be really disappointed if all of the graphics in this game aren't 3D representations of ASCII characters. I thought that was the whole point of calling yourself a 'rouge-like'.

ZZT uses all ASCII characters but isn't a roguelike. Shiren the Wanderer uses actual honest-to-god graphics and is a roguelike.

In other words: no.
posted by JHarris at 7:00 PM on May 16, 2009


Diablo is a roguelike.
posted by Pope Guilty at 7:11 PM on May 16, 2009


This is about as "roguelike" as it can get while still being 3D. I'm impressed. I would be easily addicted if I hadn't already played my mind out on my stepmom's PS/2 in 1985.

What's the concern about the Java applet? That it stores game settings on your hard drive, and perhaps it shouldn't? (I don't know, I'm asking.)
% ls -lR .jogl_ext
total 0
drwxr-xr-x  3 jubal  staff  102 May 16 22:05 benhem_com_games_wayfarer_

.jogl_ext/benhem_com_games_wayfarer_:
total 0
drwxr-xr-x  6 jubal  staff  204 May 16 22:05 1.0.0

.jogl_ext/benhem_com_games_wayfarer_/1.0.0:
total 1700
-rw-r--r--  1 jubal  staff  1392216 May 16 22:05 libjogl.jnilib
-rw-r--r--  1 jubal  staff    34828 May 16 22:05 libjogl_awt.jnilib
-rw-r--r--  1 jubal  staff   307116 May 16 22:05 libjogl_cg.jnilib
-rw-r--r--  1 jubal  staff       13 May 16 22:05 timestamp
posted by Jubal Kessler at 7:17 PM on May 16, 2009


What's the definition of an open-source programming language? I get the source code to my source code?
posted by Lemurrhea at 7:46 PM on May 16, 2009


Yo dawg, we heard you were Richard Stallman so we put source code in your source code so you can open source while you open source.

I'm so, so, sorry.

posted by Lemurrhea at 7:47 PM on May 16, 2009 [13 favorites]


Pope Guilty: Diablo is a roguelike.

Diablo is only partly roguelike.

These are the criteria I use, in order or importance:

1. Move-level turn-based tactical combat play, where non-movement, non-combat actions also consume game time. ("Move-level" here intended to mean that opponents get to act after each of your turns, instead of each of you getting several moves in a row, as in a more usual tactics combat game.) This is the most important criteria. Diablo doesn't have this; it's completely real-time.

2. Randomized dungeons. This is less interesting a game play attribute than you might think; just random generic rooms and corridors is not that interesting in play unless there are interesting things to find in them: traps, secret doors, treasure chests, special zones, and so on. Otherwise they're just a space that monster fights happen in. Diablo does have this, and although I don't find its dungeons too interesting it does have some interesting dungeon features to discover.

3. A solid, description-based identify system, that allows for trial-ID, that is to say, discovering item functions through use. Diablo only pays lip-service to this, with unknown items being unusable. The roguelikes that make the best use of this either make other means if identification so rare that the player must trail-ID many things, while also providing many bad items to stumble upon (like in Rogue), or provide a plethora of sneaky ways to identify things without use (like in Nethack). While I list this as third-most important, it is my favorite roguelike feature.

Wayfarer fulfulls points 1 and 2, but not 3. Still, it's pretty solidly a roguelike. It's fairly interesting, especially once the monster difficulty ramps up on level 2. (And to respond to the FPP, it DOES support player improvement, it's skill gain through practice instead of experience points.)
posted by JHarris at 8:11 PM on May 16, 2009 [3 favorites]


And to respond to the FPP, it DOES support player improvement, it's skill gain through practice instead of experience points.

Yeah I noticed this with a little message you get when disarming traps, but it doesn't really feel like it's there because there's nowhere (as far as I can tell) to look up what number is associated with the ability level.
posted by juv3nal at 8:29 PM on May 16, 2009


So is this thing installing trojans or what? Do. Not. Trust.
posted by Justinian at 9:13 PM on May 16, 2009


This sounds fabulous. Sketchy things, less so. I'm gonna let the rest of y'all be guinea pigs until someone finds out for sure.

And yeah, I'd definitely vote for ascii symbol graphics. I'm used to being scared of, for example, the letter L. Damn liches.
posted by nat at 10:33 PM on May 16, 2009


There's a pretty good rogue on the iPhone but I'm getting a bit bored of it - clear 9 rooms, descend, repeat - any recommendations for any roguelikes there? Something more like hack or Moria maybe.
posted by Artw at 10:37 PM on May 16, 2009


So is this thing installing trojans or what? Do. Not. Trust.

As Jubal Kessler comment shows, it's just the Java OpenGL library. It's the 1.0.0 version which isn't directly linked from the project page, but if you want to diff it yourself, go nuts.
posted by juv3nal at 10:39 PM on May 16, 2009


Screenshots or some kind of video or something would clearly dettact from all the open source fun.
posted by Artw at 10:46 PM on May 16, 2009


Screenshots or some kind of video or something would clearly dettact from all the open source fun.

screenshots [1] [2] [3, sorta]
posted by juv3nal at 10:56 PM on May 16, 2009


So anyone else play Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup? It's been heavily trouncing my purchased games in hours played this month.
posted by ODiV at 11:36 PM on May 16, 2009


What's the definition of an open-source programming language? I get the source code to my source code?

No, but you get the source of any compilers, runtime environments, virtual machines, and everything else you need to use your language.
posted by DreamerFi at 12:42 AM on May 17, 2009


Artw: There's a pretty good rogue on the iPhone but I'm getting a bit bored of it - clear 9 rooms, descend, repeat - any recommendations for any roguelikes there?

How far have you gotten into Rogue? If it's like original Rogue, if you can be so blasé about it from level 14 downwards, where the monsters begin showing their real teeth, I'd be very much surprised. That's the level on which Trolls begin showing up, which are usually a good match for the player unless he's been good about preserving his escapes to that point. At that point there's still Ur-Viles, Griffins, Medusas and Dragons to come. (Earlier versions of Rogue give these monsters different names, but they're still fundamentally the same.)

Nethack and Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup are both better at different things. Nethack is much a spiritual descendent of Rogue, while DCSS is sharply designed to the point where the game is just slightly too hard to ever be certain of winning. One of the developers, David Ploog, wrote an excellent article going over some of the finer points of Crawl's design here.

I've played some of Wayfarer now, and it's fairly good. Not terrific, but not bad. It takes more after Moria than Hack.
posted by JHarris at 1:22 AM on May 17, 2009


Ben has updated the site with a blurb re: "trust this applet"
posted by juv3nal at 1:22 AM on May 17, 2009


Ben has updated the site with a blurb re: "trust this applet"

He says "Wayfarer won't touch your hard drive" which is patently false. Very confusing.
posted by sidereal at 4:09 AM on May 17, 2009


somewhere after 14 is where my characters usually run out of luck. Getting to 14 is the bit that has become very routine and boring.
posted by Artw at 7:28 AM on May 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


Also teleport traps are not nearly as annoying as stumbling across water monsters in dark rooms.
posted by Artw at 7:30 AM on May 17, 2009


So anyone else play Dungeon Crawl Stone Soup? It's been heavily trouncing my purchased games in hours played this month.

Stone Soup was my favorite dungeon crawl last year. I won't confess how long it took me to win; well over a month.
posted by Izner Myletze at 10:32 AM on May 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


Your categorizations strike me as unnecessarily specific, JHarris, specifically the third one; making that horrible little minigame of discovery central to the definition of a roguelike would rule out, for example, the Doom Roguelike.
posted by Pope Guilty at 12:19 PM on May 17, 2009


Nothing good can come from a programming language whose name is a gerund.
posted by Crabby Appleton at 12:46 PM on May 17, 2009


You drag yourself forward with your one remaining arm.

The black adventurer never surrenders!
posted by daniel_charms at 1:01 PM on May 17, 2009


Pope Guilty: The intent wasn't to show that it had to have -all- those things. If it has either point 1, or both 2 and 3, them I'm prepared to call it roguelike. Rogue inspired several different gameplay innovations, I attempt to address the major ones in my list.

I have to have at least a working definition in order to define what my column's about, but I'll admit my criteria is makeshift. The truth is that there is no good textbook definition of a roguelike. I just get a little antsy when generic random dungeon games get called "roguelike" when they don't capture the spirit of Rogue. SSI's Dungeon Hack, a first-person AD&D random dungeon game made using the Eye of the Beholder engine, is the example that springs to mind, and yet it's closer than Diablo is; it's less grindy, the player must discover item functions and it has some interesting special zones. ToeJam & Earl is an awful lot like a roguelike, with interesting random levels and items, but it doesn't have grid-based tactical combat.

On the ID game: it's really my favorite thing about Rogue and Nethack. Other games just throw random trinkets at you, making how well you do largely a function of whatever the Random Number God has decided to grant you this play, but put in an ID game and you have to at least show some deductive skills before you can make use of that +5 Wand of Righteous Whoopass, and used incorrectly the ass it whoops may be your own. I wouldn't call it a minigame; it's well-integrated into the other systems of the game. It also helps to preserve some of the mystery of the dungeon, an aspect of RPGs that has been largely discarded in recent years.
posted by JHarris at 3:13 PM on May 17, 2009


/drinks potion, goes blind, curses loudly while bashing into things.
posted by Artw at 3:20 PM on May 17, 2009 [1 favorite]


BTW, I would totally pay money for this as a phone game. Needs IDing of found items though.
posted by Artw at 3:34 PM on May 17, 2009


He says "Wayfarer won't touch your hard drive" which is patently false. Very confusing.

I don't remember what it said when I first linked the blurb, so maybe someone else has pointed out the same thing and he's updated it, but it now says:

Wayfarer won't touch your hard drive, outside of the jre/lib/ext location Java assigns its own JOGL bindings.
posted by juv3nal at 10:36 PM on May 17, 2009


This is interesting (love the realtime feel, even though there's turn-based mechanics, and I'm amazed the 3d non-ascii nature doesn't kill the roguelike feel), but there are two things driving me crazy about it so far:

1) The map isn't saved between sessions. That's right, your inventory is pretty much the only thing to persist across saves.

2) There's no tool for navigating the map of where you've been, so even when you've found the up and down stairs, you can spend a lot of time looking for them.

Combined, I think this makes depth-oriented gameplay pretty much impossible unless you've got hours to devote to it in a single session.
posted by weston at 12:38 PM on May 18, 2009


The thing that drives me crazy is that I played for hours and only found 4 monsters, only one of which was really any different. And the items were the same way.
posted by aubilenon at 12:07 AM on May 21, 2009


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