Special Levels

Yesterday and today I've implemented a feature that was on my mental wishlist for a long time: semi-random special levels between the regular dungeon levels.

If you've played LambdaRogue, either since its itch.io release, or back then when it was "alive and kickin'" until 2012, you may remember that LambdaRogue has a main dungeon (20 levels) and a few smaller areas, which are particulary relevant for the main story and the side quests (I'm talking about story mode here; coffeebreak mode only takes place in the main dungeon). A few of the levels in story mode are not random, but pre-made, esp. the first level (the "Temple of Enoa") where story mode starts, but also four other quest-relevant levels you'll never see in the "pure" coffeebreak roguelike mode.

Anyway, for the new special levels I have combined the premade approach with randomization, in a very simple, but quite nice way. When you go down the main dungeon, there is now a slight chance that, instead of going directly to the next dungeon level, you reach instead one of the special levels. These are smaller and each has a certain theme. For example, one variant of the "birth pools" between levels 2 and 3 is a small cave, filled with mushrooms ... and LOTS of worm mothers which bear cave worms. Another variant of the same "birth pool" theme is different. Whether you'll see the "birth pools" (or any other theme level) in your game is randomized (the chance for it exists as long as you did not visit that level with your current character), and which variant of the level you'll get is randomly selected. I've hand-made 4 variants of each special level, and overall there are 55 of them.

In the next days I have to test all of that a lot and balance it, but I already have a lot of fun with that. (Partly it reminds me a bit of Angband's pits and vaults, although it's not exactly the same).

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