Puzzle Challenge: Grubworm's Gambit

Discussion in 'Custom Scenarios and Boards' started by chebert, May 16, 2017.

  1. chebert

    chebert Kobold

    I've created a challenging puzzle for Mauve Manticore but I'd like to get player feedback before submitting. The puzzle takes place in a hydroponics plant managed by Writhing Grubs and defended by Security Robots. You are playing as three thirsty Oak Bombardiers which have exactly ONE round of play to cross the irrigation room to the water supply before the grubs permanently lock them out. You need a perfect understanding of the violent spin card and of minion behavior to solve this puzzle.

    For those of you who solve the puzzle, please keep the solution hush-hush. Since this scenario uses the noShuffle and noAIPass tags, once the solution is known it can always be solved in one round without random interference. Any feedback will be appreciated!

    It's been many years since the mutants invaded Cardhuntria, terrifying the local inhabitants. Unafraid, a small band of heroes fought tirelessly until every last mutant was worm food... and how the worms have fed! The long-abandoned space vessel is now infested with writhing grubs, which converted it into a thriving hydroponics plant. Unfortunately, the local flora has been exposed to the plant's radioactive runoff, and three oak bombardiers are thirsty for more!

    The grubworm on duty gauges the speed of the intruders from the safety of the control room. "If they reach the water reserves before I seal the door they will drain the plant dry," it thinks to itself. "I can reach the door in two moves- surely long before they cross the entire irrigation room."

    "After all, how fast can those trees possibly move?"

    The trees burst through the door and attack the water reserves with violent ferocity. The grubworm panics as every drop of irradiated water is siphoned through their oaken roots. "So much for my promotion," it laments.


    EDIT: Added extra victory points to prevent draw. Added noNonMinionKillPoints tag. Removed black tiles in control room. Removed grub from interfering with robot AI. Removed chance of radioactive bite. Thank you Vlamona for recommendations.

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: May 17, 2017
    Maniafig, Killer74 and PULSEFIRE like this.


    Wasn't too hard, but I love the flavor and the gameplay.
    I've also been trying to make an irrigation plant map, so this helped.
    Very Nice!
    Definitely submit.
    chebert likes this.
  3. chebert

    chebert Kobold

    Thank you for giving it a Whorl!

    As an afterthought, if anyone manages to complete the scenario by killing one of the robots- please report it here! Reaching the victory square in one round is supposed to be the only method of victory. I've spent a lot of time redesigning the room to prevent a victories from kills, but it's possible I have still missed something!
  4. Vlamona

    Vlamona Thaumaturge

    I won by killing a security robot. I managed to get a tree on the victory square in the second round. Then I used the other trees to kill a robot over many rounds. The robot never tried to shoot me. I think if a robot can hit more allies then enemies it will not attack. (Or at least it may not attack. Maybe it is random.) Had the robot shot it would have hit two grubs and one tree so it did not attack.

    I could not figure out the intended way to win. My tree was always one square short to reach the victory square in the first round. Does violent spin not work as I think? It is only the first tree that moves that gets the bonus of moving the other two trees, right? (Edit: Nevermind, it does work like i thought.)
    Last edited: May 16, 2017
  5. Vlamona

    Vlamona Thaumaturge

    Okay, I just figured out the real solution. Very clever.

    Maybe you could have two victory squares for the grubs, so that the computer always wins pretty soon, even if you have a tree on your victory square. Then player might not have time to kill a robot. Also it would prevent a player from getting into an unwinnable position. Better to let the player lose than to put the player in an unwinnable position in my opinion.

    Also if you remove the two grubs near the robots, maybe the robots will behave as intended.

    You could also give it a tag so that there are no victory points for killing, to be on the safe side.
    Last edited: May 16, 2017
    chebert likes this.
  6. chebert

    chebert Kobold

    Vlamona, thank you for letting me know about the security robot! You're right about the robot's AI. I may have to change the room again or find the right tag to disable non-minion kill points.

    Edit: I see you've solved it in the time it took me to reply- good job!
    Last edited: May 18, 2017
  7. Vlamona

    Vlamona Thaumaturge

    I edited my posts after you answered, so read it again.
  8. chebert

    chebert Kobold

    I've updated the new (and hopefully improved) Scenario.
  9. Vlamona

    Vlamona Thaumaturge

    I think it's possible to win this new version without solving the puzzle. Worm gives you a radioactive bite, you draw panic, lands on a victory square.
  10. Scarponi

    Scarponi Moderator

    Possible, but very very unlikely.
  11. chebert

    chebert Kobold

    Ech- panic sure does throw a wrench into strategy-based radiation scenarios. I've actually experienced this issue in a MM scenario before- where a human wizard with a citadel figurine was trapped in a single cell room with a victory square. He got hit with a radiation pulse and panicked right out. I had to quit the game because killing the enemies awarded no points! I think it would make more sense if panic acted like a mandatory free move as opposed to a mandatory teleport. Anyway, as much as I would like to keep an element of battle in the scenario, the grub's bite just won't do and I can't fit any other enemy type on the field.
  12. Maniafig

    Maniafig Thaumaturge

    I just finished the level, though the old version. I like the map design, the flavour text and the way you implemented the puzzle.

    It took me a few attempts to figure out the exact mechanics of Violent Spin with a team, every tree sharing a name makes it a bit harder to keep track of as well, but some fiddling around should be enough to figure things out. I really like the twist you used here, it requires some outside-the-box thinking but totally makes sense considering how Violent Spin works so it's less "how should I know that?" than Melvelous Maze's spawn point blocking.

    I would definitely suggest not putting a Grub in the player's way though, fighting a grub seems like it just adds a variable that doesn't need to be there, how does combat serve the Violent Spinning puzzle? How about using the old design but removing/relocating the two grubs which cause the Security Bots to not fire at the player?
    chebert likes this.
  13. chebert

    chebert Kobold

    I've removed all interactions with the grubs, they now function solely as the 1-turn timer. This will likely be my last update- I'm planning to submit it sometime tonight unless something that breaks the game is discovered.
  14. chebert

    chebert Kobold

    Maniafig, the easiest way to tell the trees apart is by using one of the moves and keeping track of which tree moves first, second, and third.

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