Have you ever played ADOM?
That's not a question one gets to ask very often. Not only because ADOM is a rather obscure rougelike RPG of the sadistically brutal kind, but also -
Well. That just about covers it. Obscure, sadistic, brutal. Even those who know about it have to deal with the fact that it really doesn't help you out with learning the game, and even when you've gotten around to that it tends to kill you off without proper warning. And when you die, you die. New game. Not to mention that the victory conditions leaves you no second chances. Once you fail, you fail.
Here's a picture (borrowed from the wiki) of how it looks like:
Ah, such fond memories.
If there is one thing that needs to be said about ADOM, then that is that it takes time to learn, time to play and time to win. Like with so many other turn based games, time flies when it stands still. And the more time you spend on it, the better you get at it - both in theory and in practice.
I'm going to go out on a limb and guess that the picture above is quite incomprehensible to many of you. Those who are familiar with the rougelike genre will know that the @ is the player character, and that the ^^s are traps of various kinds. With experience, you will learn which of them will kill you as a level 4 wizard fresh from the first quest, and which ones to abuse in the later stages of the game.
If you devote a couple of hours to it, you will have learned the basics of moving around. A couple of more hours and you will stay alive. A couple of days, and you will reach lever 12. A couple of years, and you will beat it. At least once.
Now, it's not quite like me to drag out something brutally obscure just
to be sadistic. There's got to be some sort of point, right?
Why, yes. Now that you mention it.
You see, this is how mastery works. At first, things looks like a random compilation of stuff, with no sense of direction what so ever. Then you learn this one thing, which lets you see other things, which lets you try other things, which lets you get on with even more things - and if you just keep doing it, you eventually get so good that you win.
The key to getting good at things is to keep doing them. Even when you keep dying as a level 4 warrior due to a particularly unforgiving stone trap. -