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Non-linear Difficulty & Crafting Mechanic Scripts

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#1 Epad


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Posted 15 June 2020 - 07:07 PM

Hello all,

So I have an idea of my next quest. I am not a skilled programmer in ZC, so I would like to have some help. Haven't truly started making the quest yet, just a couple of overworld screens, but I have two propositions:


Firstly, I wanted to do have 8 dungeons completed in any order the player chooses (similar to my previous quest 'Summoning War'). The difference with this however, is that I wanted to have the dungeons to have its difficulty scale after each dungeon either completed...or entered. The latter being players would not cheat the system by leaving a dungeon and then entering a new dungeon with the same difficulty. Difficulty scales mainly with the enemies changing per dungeon. 


Secondly (and this is a stretch), but I always wanted to have a Crafting system in ZC. It's as simple as taking one item, crafting it with another item, creating a whole new item. The player can also opt to 'decraft' the item back to their original forms. I would want the Crafting to be both an interactive object as well as an item so the player can craft on the go. 


These DO NOT need to be essential. I could probably do without both. One or the other is fine, both would be cool. If you have questions or would want me to explain more, let me know. If there are already scripts like these, or you would like to make them, also let me know. 




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#2 Mani Kanina

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Posted 15 June 2020 - 08:40 PM

For difficulty scaling... it wouldn't be too hard to write some crude script that would increase the amount of damage link takes, or similar. But I don't think that would be a good solution. (It's quite boring)
Generally difficulty design for dungeons is several concepts:

1. Puzzle difficulty.

2. Navigational difficulty.

3. Combat difficulty.

A very advanced script could replace enemies dynamically per dungeon depending on what "tier" you have reached, which would probably be satisfying. But the problem is that such a script would still only cover one aspect of what goes into a dungeon.
Puzzle difficulty would be harder to scale dynamically in a good way, and it would most likely be awkward to use scripts to modify puzzles into harder versions. Sure, you could do that for block pushing puzzles, but those are generally not seen as the peak of engaging puzzles. Most zelda puzzles are structured around what dungeon items and tools link have, and later dungeons can take into account everything you have gotten up to that point.
Navigational difficulty in dungeons is most primarily dependent on the size of the dungeon. Which, you know, not really the easiest to scale up via script.


Honestly, the best "script" solution to this that I can think of for what you want would be a simple one that just increments dungeon tier as you go, and then puts link in the right dungeon for whatever tier they are in. But assuming you care about the aesthetics of a dungeon fitting an area as well as what dungeon item is in what dungeon..., well, now you're designing as many versions of each dungeons as your total dungeon count. Now, you can do that, but I think most people would argue that effort is better placed elsewhere.


My suggested solution is this: re-consider your design. The more dungeons you can go to at any point of time that are all meant to be equal in challenging, the flatter your difficulty curve would be. Focus instead on a structure where good design and signposting can guide the player in a reasonable difficulty curve through the game, while still technically having access to most, but not all, dungeons at all time. In order to make sure dungeons can scale up puzzle complexity you want to make it so some items are required for certain later dungeons, as so at least a few dungeons can be designed with more than one core item in mind for puzzles.


Conversely, coding in a crafting system would be very easy in comparison. In fact, the hardest part for that would be to code the menus to do it.

Edited by Mani Kanina, 15 June 2020 - 08:42 PM.

#3 P-Tux7



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Posted 16 June 2020 - 12:41 AM

You know what would be cool? That the first dungeon you enter is Level 1 difficulty, the next is Level 2, etc. and it's not determined until you enter them. This means changing how hard the enemies and puzzles are, though it makes the rewards in the later dungeons better as well if you can get through them. For example if you enter the fire temple as Level 1 you get the candle but if you enter it as Level 4 you get din's fire. This would mean designing at least 16 separate dungeons even if you only have four main levels, but it would be cool.

#4 Epad


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Posted 16 June 2020 - 05:12 PM

Kinda what I had in mind @P-Tux7. @Mani Kanina I am very interested with the Crafting System if it's possible

#5 Mani Kanina

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Posted 17 June 2020 - 07:46 AM

I was mostly offering feedback on your ideas and how complicated each of them would be. It's a bit out of my scope to help someone write either.

But like I said, it wouldn't be too hard to code the underlying mechanics, but the selection interface (and the visual drawing of it) would be the bulk of the work. I recommend making a topic in the script request forum if you want to get help with it, but you should probably have a few pieces of info figured out before hand and include in your request:
(People can't read your mind for what your design intents are, after all)

1. What items can combined together and what item they make. (Item ID number in the item editor would be relevant to include)

2. If you want resource based craft (aka collecting multiple instances of raw materials), item ID for that and a counter reference number would be desired. (You can already config this stuff in the editor in advance! What item pickup increments what counter, etc).

3. What you want the interface to look like.
4. What method you want to use to access the crafting interface.



I wish you good luck on this project, and hopefully someone will be interested in helping you. Personally I absolutely hate scripting interface drawing! :V

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