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#1 2013-11-14 21:19:05

iceman
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Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 687
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v24 (and general) Discussion

There doesn't seem to be a thread for evaluating the current state of the game, and it's something that I think is important.  With the 4800 people who haven't been playing coming back and bringing a new perspective on the game, as well as the Steam release looming, this is an especially important time for Jason to receive feedback.

So, what does everyone think about the current state of the game?  Is it solid enough to stand against thousands of players (hopefully) battering themselves against it?  Is there anything you're not liking about the game, or something that you particularly like?  What about the metagame?  Will the current mechanics lead to a healthy, constantly evolving metagame, where new designs are constantly being made, or will the game stagnate into combo locks again?  Anything that you want to say about the current game, do it here! (Keeping it civil and reasonable, of course)


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I keep dying of a natural cause - Stupidity
The biggest thing that Castle Doctrine has taught me is that the price of your house is proportional to the stupidity of the mistake that kills you.

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#2 2013-11-15 20:43:51

ZenRose
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Registered: 2013-11-07
Posts: 45

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Hello!  New player here.  I heard about the game through the feature on Extra Credits and bought it 3 days ago.  I really like this game although there is still a lack of important information that is not easily available.  Like:

What does it take to break a house such that it is removed from the list of houses to rob?
Is there still income generated over time and 2x income by wife?
Does wife hold 1/2 money?  If yes why do I lose >50% of total dollars when robbed but wife is not found or killed?
When robbing a house with a broken safe is it possible to use the safe to get out of the house?  If so how?

I'll try and remember more things I've been uncertain about recently and update this post.

Being forewarned by the Extra Credits Video that there wasn't much info on how anything worked in the game I read the entire wiki.  This provided a good base of information but lacks many details and looks like it hasn't been updated since version 10.  Once I know more about this game I'll probably try and add some things to it to cover confusion I had as a new player.

So far one thing I've really wanted is to know how many times a house has been successfully robbed or had its state saved by robber actions.  I want to know this because I am aware that once someone breaks parts of a house it might not be solvable anymore.

I'll add more thoughts when I get a few more together.

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#3 2013-11-15 21:59:39

iceman
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Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Just to answer some of your questions:
1. For your house to disappear, you need to have $0 left and your safe robbed.  Usually, this only happens if your wife is killed (since she'll hold money) and your safe has been robbed, but if you spend down to $0 and open your house to your neighbors, when someone reaches your safe your house will disappear with your wife alive.

2. There is no income earned by you or your wife - see the FAQ page to see how to get money

3. I've been confused by this as well, but I think it has to do with bounty money.  Whenever you leave your house, you wife gets half of the money you had then.  If someone dies in your house, you get bounty money - usually $500, but possibly quite a bit more.  This money goes to your safe, but not to your wife, so she ends up holding much less money than you have.

4. If you reach a safe that's been robbed already, you're pretty much screwed - you have to either out think all of the devious (and probably unsolvable) puzzles that you've unintentionally created in your destructive wake (such as 17 dogs standing right behind you) to get back to the door, or kill a family member to escape.

5. There's no way to tell how many people have robbed a house, but usually you can tell if it's been robbed before by destroyed walls and bypassed traps, or by something that will kill you on your first step in.  If it MIGHT kill you on your first step in, such as a powered trapdoor in the first tile, it's usually better to turn around until you can afford a tool that let's you pass it safely - there was a house recently that used a trick like that to get kills by people jumping onto a pit that opened on their first move.

As for information, I definitely agree that there needs to be more.  I followed the forums for quite a bit before I bought it, so I had an idea of what tiles did and such, but I can definitely see how confusing all of the tiles can be.  It would be awesome if that information was available in game, but an updated wiki is definitely essential.



As for the future of the game: I started in version 23, so I haven't been around too long, but the current version seems much better and more stable than the previous versions have been.  Different house designs seem to be encouraged now - although there are quite a few houses with with the Pitbul + Power Grid/Trapdoor combo, it's definitely not a REQUIRED design to have, like combo locks seemed to be. 

The main issue I have is just the babysitting that you need to do.  You might build a decent house that requires a ladder to brute force, and that's fine - as long as your money stays below 1800.  You might leave with $50 in your safe, but if you don't come back fairly regularly, you might have a string of people die in your house, and suddenly your house that's built with starting money in mind is suddenly inviting attacks funded by high players to get that 4k that's in your safe.  To prevent this, you have to keep coming back to your house, making sure to spend any money on something to prevent your house from seeming more inviting than it can defend against.

I'm not sure what the solution for this would be, or even if Jason wants to solve it.  Some sort of system that limits how much tools robbers can take in based on how much your house cost to build would work, but wouldn't make sense thematically...

Last edited by iceman (2013-11-15 22:39:47)


Fortress Theory Mod - New objects, tools, and paintings!

I keep dying of a natural cause - Stupidity
The biggest thing that Castle Doctrine has taught me is that the price of your house is proportional to the stupidity of the mistake that kills you.

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#4 2013-11-16 15:39:10

largestherb
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From: england
Registered: 2013-05-27
Posts: 381

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

i believe wife holds the bounty money if she shoots the intruder.

also for the record, spending $30,000 to rob/destroy a house with a robbable value of $3 is not uncommon when i am around.

Last edited by largestherb (2013-11-16 15:41:57)

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#5 2013-11-16 16:22:08

colorfusion
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Registered: 2013-04-02
Posts: 537

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

#3 is probably because of tools. The wife holds half of the money, but none of the tools. When someone robs you the tools are counted into the money that they robbed you for.

Also I believe that the vault will hold $1 more than the wife if you have an odd amount of money, although you likely won't notice that.

Last edited by colorfusion (2013-11-16 16:23:14)

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#6 2013-11-16 16:42:37

joshwithguitar
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Registered: 2013-07-28
Posts: 538

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

colorfusion wrote:

#3 is probably because of tools. The wife holds half of the money, but none of the tools. When someone robs you the tools are counted into the money that they robbed you for.

Also I believe that the vault will hold $1 more than the wife if you have an odd amount of money, although you likely won't notice that.

Further, all bounty money that was not collected by the wife with her shotgun goes into the vault meaning that you will often have a lot more money in the vault than on the wife.

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#7 2013-11-17 01:56:06

joshwithguitar
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Registered: 2013-07-28
Posts: 538

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

To address the thread, v24 seems to be working quite well. There is an interesting array of houses with some using clocks to interesting purposes and I don't see a "dominant strategy" coming up any time soon. I was able to accumulate large amount of money largely from a dog trap that caught a lot of people off guard.

The main issue at the moment seems to be that money is too easy to make. Once you establish a house it just keeps rolling in and it doesn't take long before you have no idea what to do with it all. It also seems that you can make a lot of bounty money with designs that give people no reason to die just from having them suicide in your house once they realise there is no chance of them robbing you. To counter this I think starting bounties need to be decreased - this will reward clever designs that aim to kill more than just suicide runners and will also make sure that money is not so easy to come by.

The metagame is interesting at the moment as it seems that around $30k is enough money to break pretty much any house, even those that have had excess money spent on building them. As this kind of money is not too hard to come by if you are a top house it makes sense for anyone at the top to lord it over everyone and make sure that they can never build up enough money to challenge them. Given how quickly you can make large amounts of money through robbing (as there is so much bounty money lying around each house) eventually someone will come along and topple you and there is not much that can be done about it.

Also, a small point - doorstops are pretty much redundant. Someone would have to put a lot of specific effort to make it worth while to use doorstops in their house. Having a cat run across a whole line of sticking switches is one method, but it is kind of silly.

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#8 2013-11-17 04:37:53

joshwithguitar
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Registered: 2013-07-28
Posts: 538

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Also, it is interesting how easy it is to bounce back at the moment. I have robbed a number of top houses blind only to find them spring back up completely restored in a fairly short time. I have also done similarly. This in many ways makes the wife feel a lot less useful, as you do not really need her holding onto money to do this. Reducing the amount of money in the game might help with this as well.

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#9 2013-11-17 05:34:42

ukuko
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Registered: 2013-04-06
Posts: 333

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

I think it's working pretty well.

You're right that there doesn't appear to be dominant strategy yet. In fact, I've seen houses that are extremely weak against a brute force attack (using less than starting cash) spring to the top of the ladder with tens of thousands of dollars and numerous kills.

The wife is at least useful for keeping these houses in play after the vault has been reached!

Though I think she still plays an important role — it's often easier to protect the wife than the vault, and seeing as the wife keeps her own bounties a house that cleverly uses the wife to score kills can lead to some amusing dynamics, like a robber spending a large amount of money to reach the vault only to discover that the wife is holding all the money.

I'm not convinced that reducing the starting bounties is necessary. After all, you can only die once an hour in any given house. Cash flow in the game at the moment seems healthy, and it responds to active play. If people are playing, money is going into the system. It will be interesting to see how the top house metagame evolves with more players.

You can only lord it over the peasants for so long before you have to take a nap!

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#10 2013-11-18 09:54:13

iceman
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Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 687
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Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

What does everyone think about the current tools?  Personally, I feel like the Crowbar and Doorstop are too expensive.  For the crowbar, most of the time you can get the same effect by clever use of a saw, wire cutters, or water, all of which are 1/6 or less of the price.  The doorstop is, at least in my experience, mostly just a "Get Out of Jail Free" tool - for those houses that shut doors behind you, doorstops are the best way to have a safe escape route, but they're really hard to use to actually reach the safe.


Fortress Theory Mod - New objects, tools, and paintings!

I keep dying of a natural cause - Stupidity
The biggest thing that Castle Doctrine has taught me is that the price of your house is proportional to the stupidity of the mistake that kills you.

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#11 2013-11-18 12:07:29

Gimpy_Weasel
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Registered: 2013-11-17
Posts: 5

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Personally I like the state of tool prices. Tools that a primarily for saving your life and allowing you to get back to the entrance are more expensive than ones that merely allow you to hack your way further into homes. This creates an emphasis on committing to the robbery rather than having a bunch of ways to backtrack out of traps you have sprung. This is especially important when the in-game economy runs almost solely on robbers needing to die to generate income.

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#12 2013-11-18 12:19:04

colorfusion
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Registered: 2013-04-02
Posts: 537

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

I think doorstops are pretty useless at their current price. For the same price you can get 3 wire cutters or 3 saws. Considering a door has to be in some way able to be powered, and the door has to be open to use a doorstop on it, there aren't really many configurations in which a doorstop is worth using. The saws and wire cutters will help you much more in general, and you don't risk wasting $1200 if you don't find a door.

Compared to how they have been in the past though I think the tool prices are great currently. Just probably a small tweak to some prices to make some tools more useful.

Last edited by colorfusion (2013-11-18 12:21:42)

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#13 2013-11-18 17:26:26

jasonrohrer
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Registered: 2013-04-01
Posts: 1,231

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Ah, the doorstop!  About as useful as a... "doorstop"....

Looking at the stats, either one or zero of these hand-crafted beauties has been sold each day, with the average hovering closer to the 0 mark than the 1 mark.

They're meant to thwart door-based commit gates, where the door starts out open, but closes when you step through.

Clearly, cutting around the door, or cutting the power to the door, is always cheaper.  Plus, those cutting tools can be used in other circumstances in case you don't encounter a door, where the doorstop is specific.

Thus, the doorstop should at least be cheaper than the saw.... I'll try $200 (1/3 of door cost, instead of 2x) and see how that changes sales.

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#14 2013-11-18 18:01:07

joshwithguitar
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Registered: 2013-07-28
Posts: 538

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

jasonrohrer wrote:

Thus, the doorstop should at least be cheaper than the saw.... I'll try $200 (1/3 of door cost, instead of 2x) and see how that changes sales.

Damn, I was just in the process of making a house where a doorstop would be by far the best option...

I think $200 is too cheap, doors can easily be set up to require 2 saws to effectively disable by having them powered from both sides so a $400 doorstop would still be useful.

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#15 2013-11-18 19:07:33

jasonrohrer
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Registered: 2013-04-01
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Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Well, if doorstop purchases fly through the roof, I'll let you know!

Oh my... 10 have been sold already today.  They're flying off the shelves at this new price.

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#16 2013-11-18 19:22:39

iceman
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Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 687
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Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Well, there are 2 houses right now that are BEGGING for doorstops, and now the amount you would have to spend blocking one can let you block ALL of them, so that's probably why so many were sold.

Last edited by iceman (2013-11-18 19:28:40)


Fortress Theory Mod - New objects, tools, and paintings!

I keep dying of a natural cause - Stupidity
The biggest thing that Castle Doctrine has taught me is that the price of your house is proportional to the stupidity of the mistake that kills you.

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#17 2013-11-18 20:29:10

largestherb
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From: england
Registered: 2013-05-27
Posts: 381

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

$200 seems too cheap indeed. $600 seems to fit in with the other tool pricing, no?

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#18 2013-11-19 13:16:15

jasonrohrer
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Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

So... slightly cheaper than sawing two walls?  It's pretty easy to build a door that requires sawing two walls to bypass...

I'd like to get input from more people before I tweak the price again.... can someone work up some CastleDraft examples where a doorstop would or would not be the best tool to bypass a given door?

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#19 2013-11-19 13:17:44

jasonrohrer
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Registered: 2013-04-01
Posts: 1,231

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Also, 36 of these Amish-made pinnacles of human craftsmanship were sold yesterday.

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#20 2013-11-19 16:39:35

ukuko
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Registered: 2013-04-06
Posts: 333

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

jasonrohrer wrote:

Also, 36 of these Amish-made pinnacles of human craftsmanship were sold yesterday.

Beautiful

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#21 2013-11-19 18:15:11

joshwithguitar
Member
Registered: 2013-07-28
Posts: 538

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

I was  building a house with a commitment gate set up like this when you changed the price: http://castledraft.com/editor/WSbueT

If you didn't bring a doorstop or crowbar you would need at least 7 saws or 2 explosives to get out again after you pass the door, the idea being to trap those who think "I've got a couple of saws and some water, I should be fine to go through the door". So in this case a $1200 doorstop is by far the best option.

Otherwise, there are simple ways to make an open door require $1200 to disable: http://castledraft.com/editor/8mKiWs

Doorstops are the easy way out and players should be rewarded for taking risks so I think it makes sense for the doorstop to be at least as expensive as a saw. Basically doorstops are boring, they are a get-out of jail free card whenever you pass an open door. They should be set to a price where people will still buy them and use them but people will still have interesting choices as to what to bring to counter an open door and are encouraged to take risks rather than just play it safe.

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#22 2013-11-19 18:54:04

iceman
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Registered: 2013-11-09
Posts: 687
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Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

I think $600 would be good - like josh said, it's easy to make people spend 1200 and up to cut your way out- in these cases, doorstop would be the best option.  However, in most cases, you're not going to have enough money/space to dedicate a part of your house to forcing people to use a doorstop.  Here's a more likely case- if you see a door that's connected with a normal wire and a conducting wall (and they aren't obviously connected to each other), and you don't know where the power's coming from, it would lead to some interesting choices.  Do you think the main trap is powered through the wall? Bring a saw for $400.  Through the wire? Bring wire cutters for 400.  Don't want to risk being wrong? Bring a doorstop for $600 - more expensive than either option, but hey, your life is on the line!


Fortress Theory Mod - New objects, tools, and paintings!

I keep dying of a natural cause - Stupidity
The biggest thing that Castle Doctrine has taught me is that the price of your house is proportional to the stupidity of the mistake that kills you.

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#23 2013-11-20 10:02:35

jasonrohrer
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Posts: 1,231

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

Hmm... but on the other hand, both saw and wirecutters can be used in other situations, even if you don't encounter a door.  Shouldn't that make them MORE expensive?

You know, you can pretty much ALWAYS bring a saw and use it somewhere.  Same for wirecutters (either on wires or on an electric floor).

But a doorstop can ONLY be used on a currently-open door.  It can't be used to do anything else.  If you don't encounter a currently-open door, it's totally wasted.

So... maybe 300?

So, if you have only a saw with you, and you can disable the door with that, you'll wish you had a doorstop instead.  You'll be "wasting" the saw, and thus blowing $100.

I see what you're saying though... the doorstop can be used in place of two tools in various situations (two saws, or saws and wire cutters.  And it's a pretty weak commit gate if it can be disabled with only one saw...


This is the weird dance I've been going through when trying to balance prices in this game.  I will fully admit that I have NO IDEA WHAT I'M DOING here.  It feels a bit like black magic, trying to weigh apples against oranges and eventually just settling it with your gut, and tweaking it later if it's broken.  It reminds me of trying to balance the mana cost of Magic cards.  I guess I'm comparatively lucky, though, because I don't ever have to set things in stone by printing pieces of cardboard!

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#24 2013-11-20 16:15:29

largestherb
Member
From: england
Registered: 2013-05-27
Posts: 381

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

make brick $xxx and act as doorstop, removing doorstop?

(any public place to see tool sales trend? big_smile)

Last edited by largestherb (2013-11-20 16:15:52)

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#25 2013-11-24 04:30:40

Dantheman
Member
Registered: 2013-10-13
Posts: 31

Re: v24 (and general) Discussion

I just had a play for the first time in a few weeks, and I have to say I really enjoyed the variety of houses. I like that I can hide away a starting investment of tools in my safe and give the appearance of being too poor to bother robbing, meanwhile poking my head in a few other places and seeing what tools I might need to bring to take a shot.


Get out of my house!

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