Challenge Mode can be selected from the title screen. It's totally separate from the main game, and is a linear list of challenges. As you complete one, the next one becomes available. Some kind of awards in the main game could possibly be given, such as starting with an energy potion for having beaten them all. Achievements are another good reward.
The purpose of Challenge Mode is:
1. Teach players to get better at 100 Rogues; this is the primary reason
2. Give players who are feeling a bit stone-walled by the main game another way to feel advancement
3. Simply provide another thing to do in 100 Rogues, making the game feel considerably bigger
Detailed Explanation & Examples
Each Challenge would be a pre-built arena (not random), with monsters and the player in a specific position. Each challenge would require you to defeat all the monsters within the turn limit. Also, you would start as a specific class for the challenge, at a specific level, with specific skills, and specific items. These would be hand-chosen by the level designer so that you have JUST ENOUGH to get through. You do not gain experience inside Challenges.
Note that the following examples are in a very small 6x6 size, but the real challenges would likely be bigger, and really could be whatever size the challenge needs.
"Challenge 4: Martyrin' Complex"
Turns Limit: 10
Character: Level 4 Crusader
Starting Skills: Martyrin'
Starting Items: None (well, Cloth Armor since you have to have that)
In this scenario, you are strong enough to just barely take on the Black Bandit, but the only way you can kill the Knight is by building up your Martyrin' skill and nailing him with it. So what you have to do is, cast martyrin', run down to grab the health potion while getting beaten up, hit the knight killing him, and then finish off the bandit using the potion.
"Challenge 12: Rocket Knight Adventures"
Note: This scenario would definitely be at least twice this size, maybe larger
Turns Limit: 20
Character: Level 4 Crusader
Starting Skills: Heal 2, Whack of Glory 1
Starting Items: None
In this scenario, you are totally outmatched against the three knights and robot. You've got to maneuver and position yourself and the knights in such a way to cause the Robot to hit the Knights, dealing huge damage to them and possibly aggroing them to the robot. Using a combination of friendly fire, monster-on-monster aggro, and Whack of Glory, you need to come out on top of this crazy thing by Turn 20.
- Should start off with a linear list of challenges, which you can scroll up and down through and select challenges (eventually I'd like to add more and more challenges).Each challenge should have a number, and a name (starting with 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 etc, like "1. Bandits All Around!" etc.) Clicking on one selects it, and you hit OK to start it.
- Challenges should have a custom tileset (which I'll get to you in the next few days) with a checkerboard background
- They should be able to load any monster in from any world, as required by the level
- The challenges should be stored in map text files, and also each challenge should have a set of Victory Conditions:
* must not spend more than X amount of turns * must kill specific monster * must kill all monsters (could be done with the previous one just listing all the monsters from the level) * must exit the level
- The levels should not have fog of war
- There should be a timer on the screen at all times, showing how many turns left you have to complete the challenge
- There should be "Restart" and "Exit" buttons on the screen at all times as well.