Den of Thieves 1.0 (new major update)

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Bob_The_Mighty
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Den of Thieves 1.0 (new major update)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

From the team that brought you The Altaz Mariners comes... Den of Thieves. :lol: This is a multiplayer campaign that takes a totally different approach to Wesnoth gameplay. Here, stealth and evasion count for more than brute strength. Why charge at a guard when you can sneak past, assassinate him from the shadows or simply plant a bomb behind his back? Combat is for losers! With a variety of special stealth options and hiding abilities at your disposal, your ragtag team of thieves must take on the combined might of the royal empire. You will be outnumbered and overpowered, but you have the skillz.

The campaign takes place across a series of missions which are selected by the player on a world map of Wesnoth (see below). There are four mission types with a variety of unique objectives (loot the chests, rescue the prisoners, blow the bridge!). Me and jb were inspired by games like X-Com, Fallout Tactics and Invisible, Inc. I didn't think it would be possible to do something similar in Wesnoth, but it's almost there. We've made over 30 missions so far, each of which is highly randomised to ensure replay value. Most have interactive scenery like traps to disarm, chests and doors to unlock and alarms that guards can use to alert your enemies... if they can reach them in time.

I've used lots of the micro AIs to simulate guard behaviour - so the enemies don't just sit there, they move about, follow patrol routes and alert each other if they've spotted you. When things you wrong, they go wrong quickly! In our tests we've found it's a lot of fun even when a well-planned heist goes astray, as it forces you to adapt. Sometimes you can recover by hiding out and sneaking away, but often you'll have to fight your way out of a desperate situation.

We've had loads of ideas for more content, but at the moment I'm just trying to get a basic working version ready for people to play. I'm curious as to whether this kind of gameplay will appeal to players. It doesn't change any of the basic rules of the game, it just shifts the emphasis. If anyone fancies playtesting the campaign, let us know. It should be ready soon!
Attachments
This is the campaign world map, where you can move around to select your next mission.
This is the campaign world map, where you can move around to select your next mission.
Here are some of the skills you can deploy in the game. Your regular units are randomly assigned one of these, but your leader can choose.
Here are some of the skills you can deploy in the game. Your regular units are randomly assigned one of these, but your leader can choose.
The red woodsman lockpicked the front door of this monastery, letting the leaders slip inside - only to find a giant Iron Mauler patrolling the aisles. Can they keep hidden, or will the monks give them away?
The red woodsman lockpicked the front door of this monastery, letting the leaders slip inside - only to find a giant Iron Mauler patrolling the aisles. Can they keep hidden, or will the monks give them away?
Last edited by Bob_The_Mighty on July 21st, 2020, 11:25 pm, edited 3 times in total.
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
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Bob_The_Mighty
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

So in lieu of a tutorial I thought I'd explain some of the game concepts here. First up: the world map.

Den of Thieves is played over several randomised mission scenarios which are selected from the world map. Every move you make on the world map will cost each player 1g for travel supplies. The ToD schedule here is dawn/dusk so every two turns represents a day; the turn counter tracks the total number of turns that have elapsed since the start of the campaign. So there is some pressure on players choose wisely - and to act quickly.

Mission Markers
There are initially 3 missions available on the world map, though this number can be increased by completing recon missions. The missions are distributed randomly, but the ones nearer the west coast offer greater rewards. Missions markers will eventually disappear and be replaced with a different mission elsewhere. Basically, if you don't get to them in time they expire.

The Den
The den is an underground hideaway that serves as your headquarters and your home. You can return to the den between missions to recruit new units to add to your recall list. We plan to add some base-building elements in a later update of the campaign.

The Doom Bar
The Doom Bar is a measure of royal power and will gradually rise between missions. It is important to try and keep it low - if it reaches the top you will lose the campaign! The Doom Bar will increase by 1 every 8 turns. However, it can be reduced by completing sabotage missions. The Doom Bar also affects the standard of royal units. Every step up increases the chance of encountering higher-level enemies during missions.

Towns & Cities
The urban areas of the map are mostly off-limits to wanted outlaws like you. However, special missions will occasionally show up at these locations. The flags on these hexes indicate allegiances. A purple flag shows it is allied with the royal empire; a white flag shows it is independent. Towns and cities are not yet included in the campaign.

World Map & Missions
It's worth pointing out that the time of day on the world map affects the schedule on missions, so if it's dusk on the world map the mission will start at dusk. Likewise, the direction you entered the mission hex from determines the players' starting position (come to it from the north and you'll start the mission in the north of the map). In addition, the terrain of each mission is randomly generated based on its location on the world map. Thus a mission in the Gryphon Mountains will look very different to one in the Swamp of Dread.
Attachments
This is the Doom Bar. You will come to fear it! It will continue to rise during the campaign, making each mission more difficult. If it reaches the top, you lose.
This is the Doom Bar. You will come to fear it! It will continue to rise during the campaign, making each mission more difficult. If it reaches the top, you lose.
The starting position, terrain and time of day of missions are determined by the world map. Here the thieves are starting a recon mission to increase the number of available missions - thus giving them more options later.
The starting position, terrain and time of day of missions are determined by the world map. Here the thieves are starting a recon mission to increase the number of available missions - thus giving them more options later.
Last edited by Bob_The_Mighty on May 3rd, 2020, 2:27 pm, edited 1 time in total.
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
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Bob_The_Mighty
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

Den Of Thieves version 0.1 is now available on the add-ons server for Wesnoth 1.14. I probably would have endlessly tinkered with it, but jb has (wisely) pushed to get it out early and see what people think. Any feedback, ideas, bugs, suggestions - let us know. Enjoy!
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
fire-emblem
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Joined: April 16th, 2020, 5:59 am

Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by fire-emblem »

it says 'Return to Trent' is for 5p, cant even find 5p for regular multiplayer games

it doesnt say how many players den is as the first basic thing that is said just like on 'Return to Trent'
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Bob_The_Mighty
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

Den of Thieves is for two players at the moment, working co-operatively against the ai. We will eventually try and get it working for three players.
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
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Bob_The_Mighty
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Joined: July 13th, 2006, 1:15 pm

Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

A brief overview of missions. You need 10 renown to win this demo campaign. You earn 1 renown from completing most missions. Here's a breakdown...

Raid Missions
Raid missions are an opportunity to earn gold; they're your bread and butter. Usually you'll be breaking into an outpost or fort, dodging guards and hunting for chests. Make sure to bring a unit with the lockpick ability (though you can also blow chests open with bombs - should you wish to take the less subtle approach). Raids nearer the coast tend to provide more gold.

Recon Missions
These allow you to gather information about royal activities and thus open up further opportunities. Every recon mission you complete increases the number of available missions on the world map by 1 or 2, which really helps later in the game. There is also a small amount of gold to be found on recon missions.

Rescue Missions
Rescue missions are an opportunity to find new and unique units to join your clan. Once rescued, these units will be added to your recall list. Rescue missions nearer the coast will typically have more or better units to rescue. These new units will come with a random combo of stealth skills, plus the unit's normal abilities. Thus it's possible to rescue a thunderer bomber or an assassinating shaman.

Sabotage Missions
Sabotage missions allow you to disrupt royal operations. Most sabotage missions will reduce the Doom Bar by 2, but some nearer the coast will reduce it by 3. However, no renown is earned from Sabotage missions - they are purely to lower Doom. Often these missions will involve destroying a target, so it's usually a good idea to bring a bomber.

Assembling a Team
During missions you have access to your recall list, but you can't recruit new units. Gold will often be scarce so you'll have to pick a small team that suits the terrain with appropriate skills for the mission. We've found that 3 or 4 units is sufficient for most maps.

The Mission Report
Though you'll be trying to minimize fighting as you get into position for a stealth attack, you'll often have to pick off stay guards to stay hidden. And you'll usually have to take out a few more to clear an escape route. Thus units will get xp as normal, but maybe not as much as you're used to. To compensate, all units are rewarded with an xp stealth bonus at the end of missions. This is handled in a special mission report that pops up when you exit. The various stats track your performance during the mission and the xp is awarded accordingly. You'll get a maximum bonus for completing a mission quickly, with no losses, while alerting a minimum of guards.
Attachments
This was a sabotage missions, so we didn't get any renown but we did delay the doom bar by two notches which is reward enough. You'll see that we also did pretty badly and lost 7 units, but this was only a test to get a screenshot (honest!).
This was a sabotage missions, so we didn't get any renown but we did delay the doom bar by two notches which is reward enough. You'll see that we also did pretty badly and lost 7 units, but this was only a test to get a screenshot (honest!).
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
rgwesnoth
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by rgwesnoth »

Hi Bob the Mighty and jb,

Thank you for making these MP campaigns (Altaz Mariners and Den of Thieves). I had actually just finished Altaz Mariners a couple days ago with my brother. I thought it was really fun and well-made. One comment: I felt like there were too many sea-based pirate-ship events, such that they became a bit repetitive, but otherwise it was a really good game.

Now I happened to find this campaign yesterday on the addon list so I decided to try it out and report the bugs I find. Here is my bug report (underlined text is my recommended change):
  • Text on initial scenario: "... player who leaves den first will control the figure on global map..."
  • I initially did not understand the alert/alarm system until it happened to me. I don't know if we're supposed to just stumble into it ourselves or if there should be an explanation.
  • Bug: If there is a trap on a chest, and we step on the trap, then both the chest and trap will disappear. This happened to me on the first Raid scenario, and it prevented me from completing the mission until I reloaded, and disabled the trap.
  • Text on objective: "Escape: Move both leaders to edge of map"
  • Bug: Can't reload some missions from the very beginning after having been defeated. I tried to reload a rescue mission (the mission.tgz) file but it kept saying "defeated" while still changing up the units. I can reload from the auto-saves though.
  • Bug: I'm not super sure what triggered it, but I stepped on a poison trap and the poison trap failed to trigger. It gave me the error message shown in the screenshot below. It might've happened because right after I walked on the poison trap, I started panicking and quickly made a bunch of clicks or right-clicks. Just for clarification, after I stepped on the trap, I could see the poison bottle, but my unit didn't get poisoned and the poison bottle still remained under me.
    Screen Shot 2020-05-03 at 1.48.02 AM.png
  • Confusion: I had a rescue mission where I had an optional objective to release the wolves from the kennels. After I released the wolves, the wolves started aggressively attacking my units, so I ended up killing the wolves. What exactly was I supposed to do? and what was my reward for doing the objective?
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Bob_The_Mighty
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

Hi! Thanks for the bug report, this is really useful.
rgwesnoth wrote: May 3rd, 2020, 7:44 pm[*] I initially did not understand the alert/alarm system until it happened to me. I don't know if we're supposed to just stumble into it ourselves or if there should be an explanation.
I was unsure about this as there is already a fair bit to explain. I guess ideally there would be a quick and optional tutorial level. Does it seem intuitive now you've seen it in action?
Bug: If there is a trap on a chest, and we step on the trap, then both the chest and trap will disappear. This happened to me on the first Raid scenario, and it prevented me from completing the mission until I reloaded, and disabled the trap.
Right, okay, I think the image is being removed for some reasons, but the chest is still unlockable even if it's not visible! Will fix this.
Bug: Can't reload some missions from the very beginning after having been defeated. I tried to reload a rescue mission (the mission.tgz) file but it kept saying "defeated" while still changing up the units. I can reload from the auto-saves though.
This is worrying. Did it happen after reloading from the start-of-scenario autosave or a manual save? Do you remember if you were defeated by having a leader killed or by failing one of the specific mission objectives?
Bug: I'm not super sure what triggered it, but I stepped on a poison trap and the poison trap failed to trigger. It gave me the error message shown in the screenshot below. It might've happened because right after I walked on the poison trap, I started panicking and quickly made a bunch of clicks or right-clicks. Just for clarification, after I stepped on the trap, I could see the poison bottle, but my unit didn't get poisoned and the poison bottle still remained under me.
Was the trap adjacent to an enemy that you were moving to attack? I'm not sure why, but I think the attack might interrupt the trap event and stop it from executing properly. Will fix.
Confusion: I had a rescue mission where I had an optional objective to release the wolves from the kennels. After I released the wolves, the wolves started aggressively attacking my units, so I ended up killing the wolves. What exactly was I supposed to do? and what was my reward for doing the objective?
Right, I think that's just poorly explained. The idea is that you can release the wolves and hide while they run around bothering the royals.

Btw, how difficult have you been finding the gameplay?
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
rgwesnoth
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by rgwesnoth »

Does it seem intuitive now you've seen it in action?
Yeah I think the system is pretty intuitive. I just needed to see it once to understand it.
This is worrying. Did it happen after reloading from the start-of-scenario autosave or a manual save? Do you remember if you were defeated by having a leader killed or by failing one of the specific mission objectives?
It was a start-of-scenario save. All the rest of the auto saves and manual saves worked for me. It almost looked like an issue with the multiplayer engine or something. Also, I was defeated by having my leader killed.
Was the trap adjacent to an enemy that you were moving to attack? I'm not sure why, but I think the attack might interrupt the trap event and stop it from executing properly. Will fix.
Okay I managed to trigger this one again with a spiderweb trap. Basically, if I step onto a trap and I immediately try to click or right-click, it will somehow cancel the trap. The trap was not adjacent to an enemy either time.
The idea is that you can release the wolves and hide while they run around bothering the royals.
Okay I completely misinterpreted this one then haha.
Btw, how difficult have you been finding the gameplay?
I think I found it normal overall. The first few levels were pretty tough, but then it became easier as I started gathering stronger units and could start killing guards that were alone. There were quite a few times that I had to save-reload due to unlocking the wrong room and subsequently dying, or stepping on a trap and subsequently dying.

Also, something that would probably help would be if the initial loadout was more balanced. I initially got 1 lockpick and 3-4 bombers on my team. I think my partner had 1 lockpick, 1 assassin, 1 bomber, and something else. I really wished that I could've had an assassin as well instead of relying upon my bombers, especially in the early game.
fire-emblem
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by fire-emblem »

2p

but it should be on the first line of the addon thing like it is on 'Return to Trent' so that this basic info is on there
demario
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by demario »

Bob_The_Mighty wrote: May 2nd, 2020, 9:22 pm Den Of Thieves version 0.1 is now available on the add-ons server for Wesnoth 1.14. I probably would have endlessly tinkered with it, but jb has (wisely) pushed to get it out early and see what people think. Any feedback, ideas, bugs, suggestions - let us know. Enjoy!
Hi Bob, that is a great scenario, very polished, ... very difficult :oops:
I hit two bugs (I guess):
  • skulk and slowed combination makes unit visible and the end of the turn
  • bomber dies from auto-bomb with WML error
Keep up the amazing work!
Last edited by demario on July 10th, 2020, 11:47 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Bob_The_Mighty
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

Thanks for the feedback demario, I'm glad to see you gave it a go. The auto-bomb error will be fixed in the next version, but the other thing is actually a feature. A unit cannot hide, with skulk or any of the hiding abilities, in the same turn as it walks on a trap. That's why it's so important to check for traps on these maps. I thought this was explained somewhere, but I guess that's another thing for a tutorial. Let us know how you get on with the rest of the campaign. In particular, it'd be interesting to know if you find it less difficult once you've got to grips with how it all works.
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
demario
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by demario »

Bob_The_Mighty wrote: May 15th, 2020, 7:04 pm The auto-bomb error will be fixed in the next version, but the other thing is actually a feature. A unit cannot hide, with skulk or any of the hiding abilities, in the same turn as it walks on a trap. That's why it's so important to check for traps on these maps. I thought this was explained somewhere, but I guess that's another thing for a tutorial.
Hi Bob, thank you for the feedback. I must say I didn't go through all the help so I should have been more careful not label things as bugs so easily.
So I guess this feature is now described here too. :)

I have other behaviors that I found strange when meeting them. Let me make the list and you can confirm they are features too:
  • can't assassinate a wolf (that one probably makes sense when thinking about it afterwards)
  • prisoner always visible on the turn he changed side
  • prisoner can move but can't attack on the turn he changed side
  • cannot disarm trap when there is a unit on it
  • prisoner is not poisoned when moving on trap next to enemy
If any is not clear, check the comments in savegames below.
Bob_The_Mighty wrote: Let us know how you get on with the rest of the campaign. In particular, it'd be interesting to know if you find it less difficult once you've got to grips with how it all works.
It is getting better now, after 30 single failures, understanding the features, I've win 3 maps in a row now. Getting short of gold makes ending in 24 turns hard.

I think the most useful thing to understand is that it is ok to be visible at the end of enemy's turn. As long as you hide again on your turn he will not be alarmed.

Second thing is that it seems enemies raise the alarm only when alarmed at the beginning on their turn. If they spot someone, they will move to intercept first and become alarmed just before attacking. So you can use your turn to kill it before it runs away.
Attachments
cannot attack.Rescue Mission.gz
prisoner can move but can't attack
(83.2 KiB) Downloaded 100 times
cannot disarm.Rescue Mission.gz
cannot disarm trap with unit on it
(82.3 KiB) Downloaded 103 times
not poisonned.Rescue Mission.gz
prisoner not poison on trap
(83.13 KiB) Downloaded 104 times
Last edited by demario on May 24th, 2020, 1:12 am, edited 1 time in total.
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jb
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by jb »

Hi demario

Thanks for the feedback. Very helpful.
can't assassinate a wolf
Was this wolf from the escort mission? or from was it released from a kennel?
prisoner always visible on the turn he changed side
Are you saying that the prisoner's hide skill doesn't work after it moves?
prisoner can move but can't attack on the turn he changed side
Strange, in our games it has worked
cannot disarm trap when there is a unit on it
In all our testing this situation has never come up. Good find.
prisoner is not poisoned when moving on trap next to enemy
Did you have control of this unit? or was this a raging wolf?
Second thing is that it seems enemies raise the alarm only when alarmed at the beginning on their turn. If they spot someone, they will move to intercept first and become alarmed just before attacking. So you can use your turn to kill it before it runs away.
Currently only units with the intelligent trait can raise alarms. Though I worry this is too much 'inside baseball' for regular players to easily grasp.

cheers
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Bob_The_Mighty
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Re: Den of Thieves (new MP stealth campaign system)

Post by Bob_The_Mighty »

Hey, thanks demario. Those saves are a good way of pinpointing issues. In addition to jb's points, I can clarify that:

- can't assassinate a wolf - this is a feature of the campaign, the ability description says it only works on side 4 units (should we change it to work on all enemies?)
- prisoner always visible on the turn he changed side - this is a feature of Wesnoth. The ulf prisoner is on side 6 and just attacked, therefore he is uncovered but will go into hiding at the start of his next turn which happens to be after the royals who are on side 4.

The other points are bugs and are now fixed. I wasn't even sure whether prisoners should move at all before switching sides. I think that was a late change, hence these issues. Good catch.
My current projects:
MP pirate campaign: The Altaz Mariners
RPG sequel: Return to Trent
MP stealth campaign: Den of Thieves
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