Author Topic: Enemy names and types  (Read 5397 times)

liquidsoap

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Enemy names and types
« on: August 21, 2012, 04:06:23 PM »
Lets talk about different enemy names and types. Besides the standard dragon or orc, what are some enemies that could be added to a roguelike.

Pueo

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #1 on: August 21, 2012, 06:34:17 PM »
It all depends on what your setting is. 
Underwater roguelike: merman, shark, barracuda, whale, etc.
Traditional Fantasy roguelike: Elves, orcs, goblins, water nymphs, unicorns, etc.
Post-Apocalyptic roguelike: Depends on the method of apocalypse, but in general: zombies, mutated creatures, bandits, etc.

What kind of setting are you thinking about?
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liquidsoap

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #2 on: August 21, 2012, 07:48:26 PM »
I think I want to go fantasy. I plan on having really bright colours where the player is trying to get to some mystical temple at the center of the earth. I do not want to have the full standard of just elves, orcs and unicorns. Enemies that are more exotic and that could live in a fantasy world. Any ideas?

Pueo

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #3 on: August 21, 2012, 08:00:43 PM »
    Sounds like a cool idea.  Since you're trying to reach the center of the earth, try underground creatures.  Giant moles, salamanders that live in lava, creatures that look like rocks but jump at you when you walk by, those kinds of things.  If you want, you can pretend that dinosaurs have lived underground all these years and include those kinds of things.  Carnivorous/aggressive flora could be an interesting twist. 

    The nature of the mystical temple could also produce creatures.  Who built the temple? Who guards the temple?  What is in the temple that needs guarding?  Is the temple "Good" and you "Bad" (you might have to fight angels), or is it the other way around?
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guest509

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #4 on: August 21, 2012, 10:09:03 PM »
  I just watched The Dark Crystal and Labyrinth with my niece. Some odd ball ones there.

  How wacky do you want to be? There are plenty of monster supplements to role player games that have lots of weird monsters based on different themes.

  I'd like to see an underground fantasy game include Ratmen or Ratlings instead of the various greenskins.

liquidsoap

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #5 on: August 21, 2012, 11:20:45 PM »
I am trying to stay away from the more realistic enemies such as worms or moles. And I correct myself, it is not the center of the earth you are trying to get to, it is the center of some other planet/world. I don't want the player to be trying to get to hell or the devil or any other place like that. The deeper you go the more surreal and mystical things get. You are trying to get to a temple/shrine (havent decided yet) that is protected by only the most noble and magical creatures. The creatures will be "good" essentially. Like if you met them on the street you wouldn't think they were trying to kill you. But the creatures are not just looking for blood and death. They need to protect the shrine from things that are not "worthy" of going to it. If you get there then you are worthy and will then be worthy to live there in peace with everything.

I hope that gives a good enough description of what I am looking for. I just can't think of any names for monsters.

XLambda

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #6 on: August 21, 2012, 11:23:05 PM »
Honestly, I'm not very interested in just enemy races. Yeah, it's cool to think up new races, or put interesting spins on classic races (like ToME4's elves), but that's only good for providing a general stereotype. Creatures (and that includes people) are forged by their environments and life styles. So, thinking about the big picture can give you much cooler ideas.

What you want to think about, for example, are the actual types of enemies within those races. How is their society structured? For example, if they're eusocial, you're most likely to encounter workers and soldiers, and one or more queens, perhaps also drones. What kinds of different warriors/professions do they have? How are they likely to interact? All things that could inspire the actual enemy you'd encounter. What kind of civilization are they, while we're at it? What are they good at, how do they live, do they have any mythical beliefs?

Also interesting are the actual ecosystems within your dungeon. This is mostly important when you have uncivilized creatures. There's always a food chain, and you know that you can use that to come up with cool ideas. Blarghs might be a cool monster, but if they're small, odds are that there's a Blurgh around that eats them. And because of that, Blarghs are never without Blirghs that keep an eye out for those horrible monsters. You're probably already imagining what all of those could look like. Real-world inspiration can help a lot here, or just lots of reading good sci-fi.

Thinking about these things tends to help me a lot. Just think about an environment, some creature you'd like to have there, and work from there with inspirations in nature and fantasy/sci-fi.

With that said, let me pull something out of thin air for you. Just for demonstration.

So yeah, there might be salamanders that live in lava. What do they eat? You can hand-wave that one away without too much trouble. It's probably too small for you to fight. What eats them? Oh boy, the evil magma squids, of course! Who else? So, who are these guys? I myself imagine them like vampire squids. They wait in the magma pools for unsuspecting salamanders, camouflaged as rocks using their stone-colored skin. How do they fight? Some magma squids (I'm calling them calamagmary, from Latin calamarium) use their prehensile tentacles to quickly catch the salamanders. A second type, let's say those are the male magma squids, shoot with super-heated magma like ink to fry the salamanders. They might also want to fry unsuspecting adventurers wandering too close to their pools. So are they the top predators in the magma sea? Hmm. let's just assume there's something bigger. Very much bigger. Let's call it a Magmasaurus Rex, an ancient fire dragon dinosaur godzilla thing. (which is totally not a ripoff Volvagia with legs, heh.) And it lives at the bottom of the magma sea, coming up only to catch whatever it finds. If you're a big frakking dragon, you can kill almost everything in your vicinity and eat it, too. Boss fight right there.
But wait! What if there are intelligent, civilized beings down there? Who would fit into the environment? There's probably a cool idea in the back of my brain right there, something to do with lizard folk. Let's call them Maguanas (a portmanteau of magma and iguana... yes, my names suck :'(). Lizards like it warm, so a hot, magma-lake-filled environment should be just right for them. They're a rather simple people with a preference for mining and forging. They will have soldiers equipped with heavy armor and large weapons. Because I feel like it, I'm going to give them lots of spiked maces and spiky armor. Iguanas are kind of spiky, so that fits. They may have tons of spiky things in their small towns carven into the solid rock.
What kinds of guys could they have in their society? Well, let's keep it to warrior folks, okay? I don't feel like butchering Maguana babies. Let's give them their soldiers and scouts, with heavier and lighter equipment respectively. Because they're a tribal culture, they will have chieftains. These are probably battle-hardened warriors, not easy to kill and with really good loot.
Of course, the Maguanas should worship the big Magmasaurus, right? They're probably going to have priests dedicated to it. And because we're in a fantasy universe, priests have magical powers. So we'll see Flame Acolytes, Magma Priests and the powerful Ashen Archpriest. They're probably going to sacrifice things to the Magmasaurus. Living things? Hah! Save the poor <Insert Player Race Here> sacrifice from its death at the hands of the Magmasaurus, and learn of the forbidden Fire Temple he/she has found in the depths, or partake in the ritual, gaining the Maguana's trust and support. Will they teach you their secrets of magma magic? Will they allow you into the Lava Library, where the mystical secrets of their ancestors are carven into the cavern walls? Plot twist right there.

I could go on and on, but I think this is enough for now. To think up a fantasy race is to imagine the world it was born in, what influenced them, why they are the way they are. A lot more fun than just "Yeah, wooden elves, whatevers." The plot writes itself as you pull ideas out of your head and build the world of your dreams. You'll still have to do the thinking, but it's so much fun.

Pueo

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #7 on: August 21, 2012, 11:33:37 PM »
Ok, thanks for the more in-depth information.  Since it's not "Earth," you can basically do whatever you want.  Dinosaurs are out, though. Any fantasy element is still possible, however.  I know you want to steer clear of fantasy elements, but those are easily recognizable.  A unicorn will almost always be seen as "good" and a troll will almost always be seen as "bad."

Honestly, I'm not very interested in just enemy races....

[So much imagination]

...I could go on and on, but I think this is enough for now. To think up a fantasy race is to imagine the world it was born in, what influenced them, why they are the way they are. A lot more fun than just "Yeah, wooden elves, whatevers." The plot writes itself as you pull ideas out of your head and build the world of your dreams. You'll still have to do the thinking, but it's so much fun.
You sir, have an awesome imagination.  This gave me some great ideas on how to think up my own creatures/races.    
« Last Edit: August 21, 2012, 11:36:06 PM by Pueo »
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george

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #8 on: August 22, 2012, 12:10:57 AM »
I just can't think of any names for monsters.

Go read up on myths and fables of different cultures. Australia, India, China, Japan, Egypt, people from Africa, Europe, South America, the Arctic, etcetera. They're a goldmine of different creatures and kinds of adventures. However keep in mind XLambda's post as you don't want to blend things willy-nilly. It should make sense.

Skeletor

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #9 on: August 22, 2012, 02:28:55 AM »
- animated items
- men-animals breeds
- less known european folklore creatures lke leshii, phooka, Jimmy Squarefoot, , etc

What I enjoy the most in roguelikes: Anti-Farming and Mac Givering my way out. Kind of what I also enjoy in life.

Krice

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #10 on: August 22, 2012, 06:17:33 AM »
I just can't think of any names for monsters.

If it's an alien planet you need to think and design new monsters (not copied from other sources). Detailed descriptions are also needed, because you need to introduce them. No one knows what they are.

liquidsoap

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #11 on: August 22, 2012, 06:54:11 AM »
Im still thinking about what the enemies are going to be. Thinking about something like spirits and unicorns. But when and if the game get released I will include a full description in game(at the main menu) of all the enemies and how they came to be. I am not going to copy and monster type from anybody but if and idea comes from another game I will put reference to that.

Krice

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Re: Enemy names and types
« Reply #12 on: August 22, 2012, 11:25:14 AM »
but if and idea comes from another game I will put reference to that.

I think there is no need to do that. Most monsters in any game are from earlier sources.