Hows the interest level among the community for more difficult modpacks?

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Glox / Noah

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Jul 29, 2019
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I'm working on a pack mainly for myself but I'd happily put it together and release it if there's interest. My goal is to make the gameplay more challenging. I just picked up Dark Souls 2 and the death mechanic gives a real sense of "uh-oh". If you're unfamiliar, when you die, you lose some of your max health, but can regain it with a rare item. Here's some more mechanics I've got going!

**Punishing Death:**

*Health: *
To replicate this in Minecraft, I've set the default health to 5 hearts and using the natural absorption mod gave 5 extra hearts (total of 10). On death, you lose one of those extra absorption hearts. There's a mechanic to get them back which basically just involves mob drops (which I am still tweaking). Armor can also be enchanted with an absorption enchantment for a total of up to 20 hearts.

*Death: *
Also, I found a sweet death chest mod that doesn't always put your items in a chest, but has a craftable item that you have to have in your inventory to save your stuff (kinda like the retrieval mechanic from Dark Souls, or at least as close as I see reasonable in Minecraft)

**Generally making life harder**

*Mobs: *
Currently, I have Infernal mobs set to a 100% spawn chance (I know.) but with some of the more annoying/impossible-to-counter-early-game modifiers disabled. Also, the elite/ultra chance has been reduced to combat that.

*Items: *
The inventory space has been reduced to 18 slots (9 hotbar 9 reserve) with Trophy Slots, and I'm working on the recipe for that, but I want players to be encouraged to use Backpacks of some kind for storage. Current I'm using the Pocket Crafting mod (with a TBD recipe tweak) to provide a 9 slot upgrade. I'm not worried about portable crafting being accessible because to me it's definitely not a huge game changer. The trophy recipe will likely require a pocket to even craft, plus some mid-high tier item to make that mechanic apply towards later gameplay.

*Awareness: *
Also, no minimap mod, but instead, Antique Atlas. I'm also considering removing WAILA. The pack will be small enough that WAILA shouldn't be necessarily, but I might use LiMI by Vazkii to show what mod stuff is from.

*General stuff: *
I added in TooMuchTime, set to make days and nights twice as long. I'm not sure how this plays with Blood Magic's time rituals, so it might have to go. I like the idea of preparing for the night though. With vanilla time, it seems like you're suddenly hit by darkness.

Lastly, I've added Hunger Overhaul to prevent natural health regen (only applied to your base hearts, absorption hearts require minutes of no damage to even regen at a slow slow rate) and increase the starvation penalty, but death is not instant, just enough to kill you if you're unprepared, but still not be a total shock.

*Combat: * My original idea was to make combat more Dark-Soulsy using Battlegear for dual wielding shields and whatever weapon, but it didn't feel right. My point of reference for that is well, Dark Souls, and 1.9's combat. I was thinking that a combination of Ars Magica and Battlegear would be cool. Spellcasting with a sword in the other hand sounds great, but I'm not 100% sure if that'd even work with the way BG handles right clicking to be your other hand, and I'm not too familiar with how AM2 casts spells.

**The Meat: The gameplay mods.**

Well, here's about where I'm stuck. My most sought after mods to be the basis for this pack are Ars Magica and Blood Magic. However, without regen, Blood magic becomes very difficult. Only 5 of your hearts can be actively replenished without dying, but they need potions or effects to get there. I'm really stuck on what mods to add to make gameplay more than just super hard Vanilla.

The Archmagus mod seems interesting for casting spells, but the spells as I see it are random drops from mobs, so ehhh...

Thaumcraft I wouldn't be opposed to, but it's in every darn pack. (Because it's a great mod, yeah, but still.) I'm looking to make a unique experience that doesn't feel too foreign, but with Thaumcraft I think people would skip AM2. (Unless I make the iron capped wand require a mid-late game AM2 item.... AHA!)

**Afterthoughts**

Aaaand that's about where I'm at right now. I've thrown in the Recall Stones mod with the config tweaked to 1 recall per charge with charges requiring multiple Ender Pearls per use. A simple teleport that is in my eyes DEFINITELY not overpowered, especially with Infernal Mobs.

No, I haven't play Blood N' Bones, or the new Atonement/TWBB packs, but I'd be lying if I said they didn't provide some inspiration.

A huge note: I do not intend on this being a HQM pack since I don't enjoy playing them anymore. Agrarian Skies? Awesome. Crash Landing" Sweet. Super Epic Modpack 9001? Eh, been there, done that. Maybe I'll add in Simple Achievements just for those who need guidance, but I want to get the core mechanics down first.

**Where I need help**

What mods would make you play such a pack? I haven't done any playtesting yet (because I haven't a mod list) so I can't speak to the true difficulty, but I want a real sense of danger until the late game. I'd love your suggestions! I'd rather stay away from tech mods if possible, but I'm not totally opposed to them. If you all have any ideas as to what could make this pack unique or if you see flaws in my system, let me know! I'm open to any and all suggestions. I posted this on /r/FeedTheBeast to see what they have to say as well.

**TL;DR**

Please read the post, there's some important info in every paragraph. If you won't, just read the above paragraph :)

EDIT: Please check the post on reddit, there's some good discussion points there too. I can't post the link because of my account being relatively unused, but /r/feedthebeast has the post with the same title.
 
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ShneekeyTheLost

Too Much Free Time
Dec 8, 2012
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I'll be honest, the inventory space nerf alone would make me pass on this. That's not enough space to go mining with, at all.

If you use Hunger Overhaul, I'd strongly suggest Pam's Harvestcraft as a companion. This will do several things for your food mechanics that are, in my opinion, good things.

First off, it'll nerf the food value of vanilla foods, so you don't just baked potato and win. Second off, it gives you tiered foods which require tools to make. So early game, about the best you can make would be toast, and it wouldn't be as efficient as if you had some tools, which almost always require iron. So you've gated decent food behind iron, but you can still get by without it until then, if you are careful. This gives the player a reward for making it there, not only do they get all the other things that you get when you hit iron age, but now you also get better food options as well.

Spice Of Life, used reasonablly, can also add some interesting mechanics to food, but don't over-use it or it just becomes punitive.

Agricraft can be used for growing crops, however you can really nerf the effects of duplication to keep it in line. Without MFR, it becomes harder to automate the harvesting. Pretty much the only real option is going to be golems, but I don't recall if golems will uproot the crops or just harvest them. Worth testing, I suppose. But early game, it'll be manual harvesting, which is pretty much what you want them to do. You can also customize what crops will grow on what types of farmland. You can also customize what block has to be underneath the block that it is on.

If you want to include Botania, but don't want it to be rushable, here's what you do: Don't include ANY flower generation in the world. Instead, they have to be crossbred. And they grow on Podzol, not on regular farmland. And there's a whole pyramid of things you need to crossbreed before you can start breeding the petal crops. Hours of grinding before you can get into botania. But once you have done the grinding, you pretty much have unlimited petals, so getting into the mod once you get there will be easier. The later versions of Botania would be right up your alley, what with passive crops dying after a few in game days and all.
 
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Glox / Noah

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Jul 29, 2019
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I'll be honest, the inventory space nerf alone would make me pass on this. That's not enough space to go mining with, at all.

If you use Hunger Overhaul, I'd strongly suggest Pam's Harvestcraft as a companion. This will do several things for your food mechanics that are, in my opinion, good things.

First off, it'll nerf the food value of vanilla foods, so you don't just baked potato and win. Second off, it gives you tiered foods which require tools to make. So early game, about the best you can make would be toast, and it wouldn't be as efficient as if you had some tools, which almost always require iron. So you've gated decent food behind iron, but you can still get by without it until then, if you are careful. This gives the player a reward for making it there, not only do they get all the other things that you get when you hit iron age, but now you also get better food options as well.

Spice Of Life, used reasonablly, can also add some interesting mechanics to food, but don't over-use it or it just becomes punitive.

Agricraft can be used for growing crops, however you can really nerf the effects of duplication to keep it in line. Without MFR, it becomes harder to automate the harvesting. Pretty much the only real option is going to be golems, but I don't recall if golems will uproot the crops or just harvest them. Worth testing, I suppose. But early game, it'll be manual harvesting, which is pretty much what you want them to do. You can also customize what crops will grow on what types of farmland. You can also customize what block has to be underneath the block that it is on.

If you want to include Botania, but don't want it to be rushable, here's what you do: Don't include ANY flower generation in the world. Instead, they have to be crossbred. And they grow on Podzol, not on regular farmland. And there's a whole pyramid of things you need to crossbreed before you can start breeding the petal crops. Hours of grinding before you can get into botania. But once you have done the grinding, you pretty much have unlimited petals, so getting into the mod once you get there will be easier. The later versions of Botania would be right up your alley, what with passive crops dying after a few in game days and all.

Thanks for the input! I really do appreciate it. Would any amount of inventory nerf turn you off of this? The way the pack is set up, you spawn with a pocket so you have 27 slots of active storage when you start. Keep in mind that there aren't too many special ores underground because I'm trying to avoid tech mods which add ores and stones, so you wont need as many slots. I agree that for a certain type of player this could feel very restricting. Alternatively, how would you feel about maybe a second hotbar and reduced inventory space? I was thinking about that mod but I'm not sure quite how "OP" it is.

Hunger Overhaul is currently just being used to prevent health regen and increase the starving rate. I'm a fan of Pam's and Agricraft, but the one thing I despise about those mods is that you need 800 chests to store all of your seeds and crops. Early game I find that I have a chest for tools/goodies, one for blocks, and multiple for Pam's/Agricraft. This pack is not a farming simulator, but an environmentally challenging one. (However, that does remind me about my other pack idea that's more farmy, with Forestry and Mariculture and the like...) I've never been a fan of SoL, just because it seems arbitrary to me. I was thinking of adding EnviroMine or a thrist mod to add some more challenge but I don't know if that'd be too tedious.

Botania was a mod I was thinking about, and the Mana Cookies are kind of my favorite thing, and they'd be a great food option. Your solution leads to waaay to much grind in my opinion. I'm assuming the breeding is Agricraft? I was considering making no flowers spawn but making sure that tall grass dropped the Botania bone-meal thing. The early-game passive crop death thing annoys me for regular play, but I think would fit well here.
 

Inaeo

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Jul 29, 2019
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I'm not sure I enjoy the combat mechanics in MC enough to want to play a pack like this, honestly. What would the long-term player have as an end game goal in your pack? A superhard environment such as you described doesn't lend itself well to large scale builders. No tech tree will outcast the engineers. So, other than survival for survival's sake, what is driving the player forward?

That said, in a pack such as this, I would like to see mods that reward adventuring out into the harsh outdoors - Recurrent Complex, Ruins, and Better Dungeons all come to mind in that effect Thaumcraft does this too, to a point. Also, I recommend reworking the Chest Loot Tables for all dungeons. Fighting my way in should be hard enough - now, make it worth my while to do it. Hell, add in a tech mod or two and remove all the crafting recipes and change it to just be random loot, but give me an incentive to leave the house.

In the vein of making life difficult, why not add Difficult Life? It adds a number of the features you talk about, an also increases the HP amounts and Status Effects on mobs as time goes by. The mod has a lot to offer, but it would likely require serious config consideration in play well with Infernal Mobs (an Infernal Blight would seriously wreck your day).

There was a mod that addressed mob difficulty on a local level (I think back in 1.6). The longer you stayed in an area, the more dangerous it became. If you holed up somewhere, they would eventually raid the place and you had to fight them off. I don't remember the name, but Epic Siege Mod on the Curse mod list seems similar in some features.


I'll be honest, the inventory space nerf alone would make me pass on this. That's not enough space to go mining with, at all.

If you use Hunger Overhaul, I'd strongly suggest Pam's Harvestcraft as a companion. This will do several things for your food mechanics that are, in my opinion, good things.

First off, it'll nerf the food value of vanilla foods, so you don't just baked potato and win. Second off, it gives you tiered foods which require tools to make. So early game, about the best you can make would be toast, and it wouldn't be as efficient as if you had some tools, which almost always require iron. So you've gated decent food behind iron, but you can still get by without it until then, if you are careful. This gives the player a reward for making it there, not only do they get all the other things that you get when you hit iron age, but now you also get better food options as well.

Spice Of Life, used reasonably, can also add some interesting mechanics to food, but don't over-use it or it just becomes punitive.

I agree with all of this. I don't have enough inventory space with the default and backpacks (I like to build crazy things, so I carry a lot of gear back and forth to project sites). Having less would be a major turnoff.

Agricraft can be used for growing crops, however you can really nerf the effects of duplication to keep it in line. Without MFR, it becomes harder to automate the harvesting. Pretty much the only real option is going to be golems, but I don't recall if golems will uproot the crops or just harvest them. Worth testing, I suppose. But early game, it'll be manual harvesting, which is pretty much what you want them to do. You can also customize what crops will grow on what types of farmland. You can also customize what block has to be underneath the block that it is on.

If you want to include Botania, but don't want it to be rushable, here's what you do: Don't include ANY flower generation in the world. Instead, they have to be crossbred. And they grow on Podzol, not on regular farmland. And there's a whole pyramid of things you need to crossbreed before you can start breeding the petal crops. Hours of grinding before you can get into botania. But once you have done the grinding, you pretty much have unlimited petals, so getting into the mod once you get there will be easier. The later versions of Botania would be right up your alley, what with passive crops dying after a few in game days and all.

For the record, Golems work quite well with Agricraft harvesting. I agree about gating Botania inside of Agricraft as well, if you want it to hold players off of some of the early Botania toys (Ring of Magnetization and Sojourner's Sash come to mind here, but you could argue Manasteel Armor too). Speaking of automation, why plans do you have for it? If I have to manually cut down trees (my first automation project in any pack) for over half the pack until I can work my way through AM2 into TC to get golems, I'm walking away unless there is another option.
 
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ShneekeyTheLost

Too Much Free Time
Dec 8, 2012
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Lost as always
Thanks for the input! I really do appreciate it. Would any amount of inventory nerf turn you off of this? The way the pack is set up, you spawn with a pocket so you have 27 slots of active storage when you start. Keep in mind that there aren't too many special ores underground because I'm trying to avoid tech mods which add ores and stones, so you wont need as many slots. I agree that for a certain type of player this could feel very restricting. Alternatively, how would you feel about maybe a second hotbar and reduced inventory space? I was thinking about that mod but I'm not sure quite how "OP" it is.
As long as I have some way of storing stuff, I'm probably good. Thing is, particularly mid to late game, I'm probably carrying as many tools as I am anything else.

Hunger Overhaul is currently just being used to prevent health regen and increase the starving rate. I'm a fan of Pam's and Agricraft, but the one thing I despise about those mods is that you need 800 chests to store all of your seeds and crops. Early game I find that I have a chest for tools/goodies, one for blocks, and multiple for Pam's/Agricraft. This pack is not a farming simulator, but an environmentally challenging one. (However, that does remind me about my other pack idea that's more farmy, with Forestry and Mariculture and the like...) I've never been a fan of SoL, just because it seems arbitrary to me. I was thinking of adding EnviroMine or a thrist mod to add some more challenge but I don't know if that'd be too tedious.

Botania was a mod I was thinking about, and the Mana Cookies are kind of my favorite thing, and they'd be a great food option. Your solution leads to waaay to much grind in my opinion. I'm assuming the breeding is Agricraft? I was considering making no flowers spawn but making sure that tall grass dropped the Botania bone-meal thing. The early-game passive crop death thing annoys me for regular play, but I think would fit well here.
Odd, I'd have thought grinding would've been right up this pack's alley.

This may not be a farming simulator, but 'baked potatoes and done' eliminates any 'nerfing' hunger overhaul provides. This gives you an envoronmental challenge: grabbing all the required materials to make your food of choice. For example, for Delighted Meals, you need: Some kind of berry that can be turned into a smoothie (melons also work), Potatoes (for the fries, also a source of flower for dough), Soybeans (for the soy milk for cheese and the firm tofu for meat replacement), lettuce, and tomatoes. Then you have a bunch of sub-combines using different things (you need toast, so you're going to have to cook that up, presser for the soy milk and tofu, plus a lot of combines using the pot and other tools in a crafting square). The result, however, is pretty good.

In other words, if you are going to do Hunger Overhaul, you might as well go whole hog.

And yes, Agricraft has an option for breeding botania petals. Depending on what you can luck into with drops from gardens, you can sometimes get a head start on them. But it is a perfectly viable source of petals if you want to turn off the plant spawning. It also gates botania behind some work, which is a common complaint about the mod in more 'hardcore' mod packs. This would balance it out nicely with the other magic mods you plan on including.
 

ShneekeyTheLost

Too Much Free Time
Dec 8, 2012
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Also, storage.

I'd suggest two mods for storage: Enhanced Inventories (and Inventory Tools) and Storage Drawers. Enhanced Inventories is pretty much Iron Chests done much more intelligently and beautifully. And it has a Fabricator so you can get auto-crafting but you have to work for it. Storage Drawers is pretty much Barrels 2.0. Since you don't have much in the way of tech here, that's pretty much most of what it does: it stores lots of one item in itself. The upgrade system is very nice, however, and the visuals are much more in keeping with what you want to do here than JABBA. If you have any kind of automation, the Controller can really help sort things out by being able to pipe into the controller and have it automatically go into the proper drawer.
 

rhn

Too Much Free Time
Nov 11, 2013
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I must admit that I don't get it.

Minecraft have horrible, awful, terrible, stupid and in all respects bad combat controls. What is original and different about Minecraft is the freedom to build and alter everything in the world to your hearts desire. Why you would want to transform it into a poor excuse for a hack-n-slash and make building etc. a real PITA, is honestly beyond me.

But if you choose to do so, then I would feel that there should be a purpose by doing so. The struggle you impose should have some goal. IMO this would be where HQM like stuff comes in. The extra difficulty is there to make it harder to achieve certain large rewarding goals, which in turn could make it possible to do harder stuff or easier to build/progress. But if you don't have anything of that kind and just have normal sandbox mode, then you just have annoyance and frustration without rewards.

PS: I hope this can be used for something constructive, I am not trying to bully or flame anyone. This is just how I feel about this.
 

Waisse

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Jul 29, 2019
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If combat and hunger are actually the main content of your pack then make it worth it. Good luck thought because those are absolute garbage vanilla mechanics, most people despise them and prefer spending time with actual content mods like Thaumcraft or Botania.
 

Linda Hartlen

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Jul 29, 2019
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If you make it like a Complete the monument style adventure ala Vechs and gang.. sure otherwise I would have to agree with rhn.
 

ShneekeyTheLost

Too Much Free Time
Dec 8, 2012
3,728
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Lost as always
Fun fact: ShneekeyCraft was originally going to be a modded Super Hostile-esque map, but my map-making skills are made of fail and utter rot. So I just released it as a mod pack instead.