I got the chance to peek at an excerpt from a game development book. This chapter covered the essential game mechanics of successful games. I thought I would rate Angband in terms of the necessary mechanics listed. The categories were points, collecting, feedback, exchanges, and customization.

Well Angband is definitely point driven. You see your score each time you save your game. Angband is also not just a game of collecting gold. It is a game where you must figure out which items to keep, and which to sell. So it goes beyond just simple collections.

There is a turn based feedback system in Angband. You constantly know what the effects are on your health, mana, location, etc. This makes Angband very interactive. You may need to play a multiplayer version of Angband to get into any meaningful exchanges. Otherwise vanilla Angband scores low in this category.

I know Angband has numerous settings that you can customize. I usually play with the same settings applied. However there are many other options available should I want to change them. Angband seems to fare well in all the game mechanic categories. That is probably part of the reason why this is a timeless great game.

Armor Up

My latest Angband character is Cloud. He is a character level 27 Mage. And he has a new problem. The light hounds are blinding him all the time. That prevents spell casting ability, which may lead to death.

The solution was to get a helm of Seeing, which would prevent blindness. However that is easier said than done. I kept visiting the armory. But I had no luck. I started worrying that the old version of Vanilla Angband I was playing did not support helms of Seeing.

While visiting the armory about 100 times, I did purchase some other nice items. I got some gauntlets of Agility that do not inhibit spell casting. I also picked up some boots of Free Action. But there was never any helms of Seeing.

Finally I almost gave up. However I found the prize at the Black Market. There I found a crown of Seeing. Yes. I also got a cloak of Protection. Sure the black market charges a high overhead for items. When you are desperate, it is well worth it. Charge on Cloud.