Mutation update

So an user called Pyridrym update the Mutation section of the wiki to be more up-to-date with the current version. Nice job and thanks you!

There is one thing however, IMO the general description of the mutation is greatly biased, and not really reflect the current state of the mutation in trunk right now.


There are a few different categories each provides a different type of experience when mutated into:
Lizard: A relatively "balanced" melee-centric mutation. Reduced dexterity and cold blood in exchange for some decent combat and utility mutations.
Bird: Very mobile in exchange for poor health and defense. You're faster than a Kenyan on PCP and have no need for things like "shelter" or "regular meals", but all it takes is a couple of good hits to kill you.
Fish: This should be obvious, but Fish mostly just makes you really good at swimming.
Beast: The opposite of Bird. Amazing in close combat, but extremely high-maintenance.
Feline: Basically just a catlike variant of Beast.
Lupine: Basically just a doglike variant of Beast.
Ursine: Another slow-moving melee tank. Exists mostly as an excuse to add the hibernation mutation.
Cattle: You're a huge, lumbering herbivore with a lot of health, a powerful natural attack and the ability to eat bushes. Plays like a less restrictive version of Plant.
Insect: Fairly capable melee-centric mutation. It's not as potent as Lizard or Beast, but it also has fewer drawbacks. And it comes with a few utility mutations to boot.
Plant: You're a slow, thorny tank that uses very little in the way of supplies. Great for turtling, not so great for raiding dungeons.
Slime: Chaotic. Offers both great boons (many of them situational) and catastrophic drawbacks. Comes all down to Luck.
Troglobite: You turn into a underground nightcrawler. It has a lot of nasty side effects like making you useless in the daytime.
Cephalod: Surprisingly flexible. Adapts quickly to most situations, be that melee, swimming or stealth. If you get there that is, which will take you a while.
Spider: You make webs, move fast and have a poisonous bite.
Rat: Produces a durable but very high maintenance character. Requires you to look for new food constantly.
Medical: Become invincible to anything but a shotgun in your face, with minimal drawbacks. Who needs doctors and bandages anyway?
Alpha: A very "safe" category. Low risk, low reward. A next step in human 'evolution'.
Elf-a: A lot like Chimera, except stealth-based instead of combat-based.
Chimera: Super-Beast. You have pretty much every good offensive mutation, but you also have a ton of negative mutations and will probably die after a few days.
Raptor: High speed predator. Somewhat like an assassin goes quickly into melee, kills and can flee fast on the first sign of danger. Not as durable as other melee mutations though.</blockquote>[/spoiler]

I suggest we come up with a more objective description, avoid the opinionated approach. Ideally each category will describe what the mutations do, various advantages/disadvantages and the general “feel” of that category. What do you think?
Also, not sure if we should insert some lore explanation for each category, may clutter things too much though.

Reserve for post.

[size=12pt]Draft:[/size] (Subject to change)

Lizard: Melee-centric, decent combat ability with some utilities like reduced wet penalty, infrared vision. In exchange, your dexterity is reduced and you become cold-blooded, which can be problematic in winter without proper clothing. A fairly generic and balanced category.

Bird: You become very fast and agile, consume little food, dextrous, and very perceptive. This category also bestow excellent scouting ability for players who like to move constantly like extended sight-range, reduced noise from walking. The disadvantages are that your body is more fragile so avoiding damage will be more important, you also become heat dependent.

Fish: The category give you the ability to survive and navigate underwater freely, negate wet penalty, and on top of that good night vision. But at the expense that you will become easier to track due to the smelly trait, deformed will make NPC interaction significantly harder. This category also require you to maintain a constant supply of clean water as your body will lose liquid very quick.

Beast: Opposite of the Bird category, heavily melee-centric with good combat capability and several utility mutations to aid you with animal interaction, later on this category will allow you to hunt and consume the prey directly with a morale bonus. The downsides is you become forgetful, sleepy and deformed. This category is the overarching category for players who want a balanced animal-like character.

Feline: Beast-like but more inclined toward being dextrous, feline-themed mutations will give you excellent night vision, good hearing capability, light step, feline fur for protection from cold weather. In exchange, a large chunk of the day must be dedicated to sleeping, this category promote sleeping in the day and looting in the night.

Lupine: Can be considered a sub-category of Beast, Lupine provides wolf-like mutations like night vision, growler, grey fur for cold weather and later on, the predator peak like Beast. Unlike Feline, this category focus on making you stronger instead of being dextrous. The disadvantages of this category is you will look ugly and howl uncontrollably and unpredictably from time to time, which may give your position away to enemies.

Ursine: Beast-like with the unique ability to store fat in your body and go to extended hibernation. A passive and tank-y category with shaggy fur, greatly enhanced strength at the cost of body encumbrance, slow to move and being bad-tempered. The hibernation may introduce interesting aspect to survival planning, the boosted strength and endurance ensure that you will prevail in melee combat most of the time as long as you can manage the encumbrance.

Cattle: This category turns the character into a herbivore version of Ursine, slow to move but with defensive mutations like hooves and thick fur. Cattle threshold mutation allow you to eat underbrush and grass directly, which means food is readily available everywhere. You also are more resistant to disease.

Insect: You become a cold-blooded bug-man with mandible and insect limbs, a fairly melee-centric category like Beast or Lizard but less potent, although you won’t have to suffer much drawbacks for it. This category comes up with some utility mutation as well, making it more versatile and adaptive.

Plant: Primary a defensive category with disease immunity, fast regeneration ability and bark, you won’t have to worry much about food or water as your leaves can provide nutrition from sunlight and your bark will slow down the dehydration process. In exchange for all that, your become very slow, even more so when you’re not directly under the sun, your sense becomes dull and you must spend more time sleeping. This category is best suited for player who plays defensive and tend to stay in their fortification instead of going out.

Slime: A high-risk high-reward category, most of its bad mutation can severely hamper one’s survival ability including fast metabolism, high thirst, vomitous, increased damage received due to hollow bones and genetically unstable. On the other hand, the good mutations include poison resistant, disease and parasite immunity. You lose your strength stat but your dexterity is enhanced and your slime-like body can easily maneuver around bars and doors. This category can be chaotic and require a some luck to utilize.

Troglobite: Tailored toward living underground, with the ability to digest rotten food and metabolize alcohol. Trolobite mutations like full night vision and infrared vision are useful to have for night raid too as long as you retreat back underground at dawn. Most of the drawbacks are associated with being outside when it’s day so it’s best invested in when you decide to dedicate your life around living in your underground fortress.

Cephalopod: This category mostly revolve around tentacles and being a dextrous and intelligent octopus-like mutant, along with several water-themed mutations like Fish. The downsides are similar to Fish, in addition to that you’re also move slower on land. For players who want a similar but not quite the same experience that the Fish category offers.

Spider: Spin your own web is the main selling point for this category, along with the boons of both night and infrared visions, chitinous plate and poisonous bite attack, you’re also very perceptive. Light sensitivity and heat dependent balance it out some what but overall this is a nice category to follow without too much downsides.

Rat: Offers disease resistant and infection resistant, and eventually opens up eating rotten food. A durable category but high-maintenance, you are required to look for food constantly as your internal metabolism speed up, and light sensitivity won’t make it easy for you to travel around at day.

Medical: Bestows many good mutation revolve around bad effect resistant (disease, infection, parasite) and fast pain recovery rate as well as regeneration ability. Post-threshold you will be highly durable and even receive morale boost from being in pain (masochist). The bad mutations are light weight, forgetful, addictive personality, chemical imbalance, schizophrenic, jittery and mood swings which can be annoying to deal with, especially when there are so many of them in effect.

Alpha: The safest among the categories, this is the only human-themed category, it mostly improve your stat and offer some nice little rewards like good hearing, less sleep and pretty with little downsides like fast metabolism and nausea. A low-risk low-reward category for those wish to mutate into future version of human’s evolution.

FWIW those descriptions in the wiki were taken from a poorly-participated-in poll in the Library. Say what you like about 'em, but they were people’s take three months ago.


I mean no disrespect to others opinions of course, but being on the wiki I dare say it should be more objective ( not that I can be objective about things all the time) and detailed.

And things have changed for mutation since 3 months ago, so an update is worthwhile IMO. If you object to that then I can stop.

No objection on my end. Just pointing out that the descriptions were actual user-reports, IIRC, so to the extent that they show bias, that bias may be supported by their experience (for instance, maybe a given category is underwhelming).

By all means, make a neutral report on 'em.

Make way for neutral, dev-centric report on them and player, subjective review of them…

sorry for being so perly (one-line) irc-y, /me hates forums,

[quote=“elauminx, post:6, topic:5644”]Make way for neutral, dev-centric report on them and player, subjective review of them…

sorry for being so perly (one-line) irc-y, /me hates forums,

Heh? thinks that’s a complaint but isn’t sure how to parse it

I tried to stay out of the way on that poll lest I bias the results, FFS. I presume the players can be equally, if not more, objective than I can, since I wrote the things. I’m very appreciative of actual use-reports because there’s only so much I can test on my end, and I generally can’t surprise myself or otherwise have interesting experiences with their use.

[quote=“KA101, post:7, topic:5644”][quote=“elauminx, post:6, topic:5644”]Make way for neutral, dev-centric report on them and player, subjective review of them…

sorry for being so perly (one-line) irc-y, /me hates forums,

Heh? thinks that’s a complaint but isn’t sure how to parse it[/quote]

More like a general, directionless rant of desperation…

I want to luve Cataclysm, but when after half a year of being away it greets me with segfaults (in the non-tile version), I just can’t make up my mind if I want to even “waste” my time learning and improving the code if a year from now it will still be heisenbug infested pile of nonsense. It still can be the case that the code will improve, but by then people will jump the ship for Cata2 or some other
actually successful AA (read: eye-candish) Cataclysm/Dwarf Fortress knock-off… or, as some people fear, C:DDA itself shall turn into purposeless dress-your-doll sandbox shooting fest.


P.S. If it hasn’t already…?-/