Gameplay Design

Recall

Scroll of recall provides two-way travel to and from the deepest dungeon level achieved.

Read a scroll of recall in town to return to the dungeon.

Read a scroll of recall in the dungeon to return to town.

You may always take the stairs down from town.

Author's Note: Returning to town restores player attributes to maximum and identifies all carried or worn objects. This accelerates the game pace compared to UMoria.

Light

A fueled light sources provides to-hit bonuses above and beyond the original character design of UMoria. You get benefits from maintaining light instead of being killed by neglect of it.

Dragon's Breath

Distance from the source now reduces the damage linearly. Breath damage is based on the health of the monster as in UMoria. Fighting a dragon face-to-face is a risky business that you explicitly chose to take on.

Elemental damage

Fire/Frost/Lightning/Acid resistance items provide 1/2 damage.

Fire/Frost Absorption stacks an additional 1/2 damage reduction.

Acid attacks are reduced damage (1/2) when armor is affected. The armor slot is randomly chosen and must provide > 0 AC to the wearer.

Poison attacks are 1/2 damage over time, 1/2 immediate.

Lightning has no secondary stacking resistance. Lightning may destroy rings and wands in the player inventory.

Surprise attack implementation (boon to stealth)

Attacking a sleeping monster grants +hit/+crit for melee or projectile attacks. This bonus does not apply when blind or the monster is invisible. The critical strike bonus is lower if the monster is not lit (boon to infra-vision).

Projectiles & Launchers

Projectile stack size is based on player strength. Items granting +tohit +todam affect projectile damage. This damage is multiplied by the critical strike multiplier only for ranged attacks. Heavy projectile launchers grant a larger critical strike multiplier.

Itemization Design

Potions of Frost & Fire Absorption

Fire absorption protects the player's inventory from destruction: projectiles & launchers, hafted weapons, pole-arms, boots, gloves, cloaks, soft armor (non-RF), staffs, and scrolls.

Frost absorption protects the player's inventory from destruction: potions & flasks.

Speed

The player is limited to (+2) the equivalent of "very fast" monsters.

+1 by equipment of speed (ring or boots)

+1 by potion, spell, or staff

Negative speed affects are limited to (-2) the equivalent of "very slow" monsters.

-1 by equipment of slowness

-1 by over eating, potion, dart trap, staff, monster spell

Positive and negative affects may be in affect at the same time. So a fast player (+1) affected by a slow dart trap (-1) moves at normal speed (0)...

Author's Note: These speed rules are changed from Umoria which allows speed stacking without limit.

You should be able to go toe-to-toe with a Balrog at Very Fast. The game becomes less fun when your speed is greater than the Balrog's.

Life Drain

The player may lose all experience previous gained by way of life drain. Level is an important source of magic resistance and chance to hit. You'll have a very hard time if you stay below your previous maximum experience.

Reactive measures restore your experience to the previous maximum. Potions of Restore Life Levels are available from the priest shop (5) in town.

Proactive measures may protect you from monster attacks which drain life (experience). A Scroll Of Protection from Drain Life protects you for a duration of random(1, 25) turns + 1 per character level. A weapon tagged with Slay Undead (SU) provides protection while wielded.

Author's Note: Umoria does not provide proactive measures for life drain.

Sustain Attribute (STR/INT/WIS/DEX/CON)

Player attributes range from [3, 118].

As a reactive measure, you may return to town to regain all attributes.

As a proactive measure, rings of Sustain may be worn. A weapon tagged with Holy Avenger (HA) provides sustain Strength and Dexterity.

Author's Note: Umoria requires potions of restore which are randomly available from shops (4) and (5). This stalls the game progression and requires a lot of early dungeon grinding without real risk of death to the player.

Umoria did not grant attribute bonuses for Sustain rings. This enables the player to perform gear swaps to recover from minor attribute loss without interrupting the dungeon run by returning to town.

I would like to replace Ring of Sustain Charisma with something else. No monsters drain charisma. There is a potion of ugliness. Email moria@rufe.org if you have an idea.

Ring of Feather Falling / Boots of Slow Descent / Defender (DF) weapons

Feather falling provides immunity to trap doors, allowing player control over the rate of dungeon descent.

Author's Note: Umoria provides no means of halting or slowing dungeon descent.

Crowns

Might: +Con +Dex +Str & Immunity to paralysis

Lordliness: +Wis +Chr +Bonus to magic devices

Magi: +Int Resistance Lightning/Cold/Acid/Fire

Courage: +Con +Chr Immunity to fear

Seeing: See Invis & Search Bonus & Immunity to blindness

Regeneration: Fast health recovery

Author's Note: Crows of Lordliness, Courage, and Seeing provide gameplay affects not available in UMoria.

Scroll of Genocide

Requires landing a melee attack to activate.

Other Divergences from UMoria

Empty bottles and broken objects were removed from the game. Drop chances are shuffled a bit, generally in the player's favor.

Cat-o'-Nine-Tails is now the lightest weapon in the game. As a child, I imagined a whip being useful in some way. Now it may be the weak character's best chance of a multi-hit weapon.

Game Actions

Throw for generic inventory objects is gone to simplify the UI and reduce ambiguity for new players.

Bash with shield does not have an interface, nor a critical gameplay role.

Closing thoughts (Semi-Spoiler)

No set of armor provides immunity to all negative affects. It's expected that you grimace each time you encounter an Emperor Lich.

The Balrog occurs on level 50+ (2500ft) with a 50% chance. Text appears on levels populated with a Balrog: "You hear a low rumble echo through the caverns." Evil Iggy appears on level 50+ when the Balrog does not, presumably he already killed the Balrog.