Combat Overhaul is Ready

Started by Halaster, March 22, 2023, 07:54:36 PM

March 22, 2023, 07:54:36 PM Last Edit: March 25, 2023, 10:09:58 AM by Halaster
New System

The new combat system is ready to be released, and will be pushed to the live game on Sunday, April 2.  The play-testers and I have spent the past few weeks testing combat, tweaking the code, testing more, and so on.  We now feel it's in a good place that we're ready to release it, though I expect there will be ongoing tweaks needed.

The goals of this change were as follows:

1. Bring all combat styles into rough equilibrium, de-throning two handed as king.  We feel we have accomplished this goal.
2. De-emphasize strength a little, add a bit more emphasis on agility.  We feel we have accomplished this goal.  It's important to note that strength is still the best stat for combat, only less so than before.  Agility now has a meaningful effect on combat.
3. Fix a few issues, such as "weight not mattering on attack speed".  We have added this feature as well while also finding a rather large combat bug (explained below) that was addressed.
4. Add a minimum size/weight weapon a HG can use.  We decided this was not necessary and did not implement it.


Previously, two-handed combat was far and away the best combat style, and over the years the game's "meta" has evolved to emphasize this.  The changes now make dual-wield and shield-use viable alternatives, depending on your style and preference, and affected by your character's strength and agility.  As a general rule, two-handed combat is still the strongest option for a high strength, low/average agility character.  For characters with low/average strength and high agility, dual wield is going to be your best overall option.  For characters with good scores in both, either style will be good for you.  Shield use has been buffed and is now a solid contender, giving you a much higher chance at survivability, and will benefit any set of stats.  While not as good as the rest, one-handed combat does have a place in that it gives bonuses to several skills.


Agility-based extra damage - Raises the minimum damage done.  High agility will make damage more consistently 'average'.  It won't raise the cap, however.  Example: Your sword does 1 to 5 damage.  An agility giving a +2 bonus means it now does 3 to 5 damage.  Humans with good agility or elves with average agility and up (and other racial equivalents) will start to benefit from this.

Strength-based - Splits damage bonuses by raising the maximum damage done and adds a flat bonus.  This keeps the max damage strength can be the same as before, but lowers the average a bit.  Example:  Your sword does 1d6 damage and you have a strength that gives you 6 bonus damage.  This means you now do 1d9+3.

Example for both:  If you had +6 to damage from strength, and +1 from agility, your sword that does 1 to 6 damage would now do 2 to 9 + 3 (for the code inclined: number(2,9)+3 ).

General Combat:

- Added weapon weight to calculations for speed of attacks.  This takes your character's strength and the weapon's weight into account.
    - Two handed suffers the least, dual wield suffers the most
        - It will slow down attack speed if the weapon is overweight for your character.
        - 'Assess -v' the weapon and it will display whether the weapon might affect your speed.  You can also see this with view on a shopkeeper
- All styles have a bonus to damage based on strength

- Agility based extra damage
- Offense Calculation:  Weapon skill will have a large impact, small penalty if the one hand being used is ES.
- Defense Calculation:  Weapon skill will have a small impact.
- Large bonus to kick, minor bonus to kick damage
- Small bonus to disarm, hack, riposte

- Agility based extra damage
- Damage penalty that is offset by higher skill
        EP: penalty gone by high apprentice
        ES: penalty gone by low advanced
- Offense Calculation:  Weapon skill will have a large impact, dual wield skill will have a moderate impact to both attacks
- Defense Calculation:  No bonuses
- Medium bonus to parry

- Strength based extra damage
- More strength based extra damage relevant to your two-handed skill
- Minor agility based extra damage
- Offense Calculation:  Weapon skill will have a large impact, two-handed skill will have a moderate impact.
- Defense Calculation:  Two-handed skill will have a moderate impact
- Minor bonus to parry

Weapon and Shield
- Minor agility based extra damage
- Offense Calculation:  Weapon skill will have a large impact, small penalty if the weapon is ES
- Defense Calculation:  Shield use skill will have a small impact
- Large bonus to bash
- Increase max shield skill for heavy fighters by moderate amount, light fighter by small amount, balanced by tiny amount
- Chance to block attacks

- Offense Calculation:  No bonus
- Defense Calculation:  No bonus

Attack Speed

The Bug

Along the way we discovered a combat bug we called the Negative Loop bug.  At the end of every round of combat, you are given a value that determines how many rounds of combat you wait before you attack again.  This is influenced mostly by your agility, and a few other lesser factors.  It was possible to get a negative number on this, which simply just meant you attacked again the very next round.  However, there was a good chance that once you got a negative number, it would start compounding, and your negatives would get lower and lower.  This would mean that you got in a loop where you attacked every single round of combat, and once that happened you generally stayed in it.  If you ever felt like you just had to "warm up" for a bit of combat before you started attacking at full speed, this was the bug.  If you ever felt like an npc critter would attack you, and after a few rounds would just go into a fast beast mode of constant attacks, this was likely the bug.  It affected everyone in combat, and has probably been around for decades.  We found and fixed this bug, and the outcome will mean that generally combat will seem a little slower now.

Weapon Weight

Weapon weight is now a factor in how fast you attack in that it adds penalties which can be mitigated with strength.  When using a weapon two-handed, if the weapon weighs less than your strength, then you will suffer no issue.  For other combat styles (dual wield, one handed, shield use) if the weapon weighs less than half of your strength, you will suffer no issues.  If it weighs between half your strength and your full strength value, you will suffer very minor penalties.  You can now assess a weapon and see a message that will let you know if the weapon will slow you down or not.  Note that if you see "slow you down a little", that doesn't mean you cannot use that weapon effectively.  Lightweight weapons that say "you could use it with no issue" means you will be at your fastest.

A special thanks to the Playtesters.  I greatly appreciate your efforts in testing this and your feedback.
Betweenford, mansa, Doublepalli, Fragmented, najdorf, Sarissa Nolth.  With help from Sulaez, Krath, Krok-Oh-Dial, and Brokkr.

tl;dr   Nerfed two-handed, nerfed strength, boosted agility (thus boosted elves), boosted shield use, boosted dual wield, fixed bug

Questions, comments, etc can be had here:,59004.100.html

EDIT:  Added a playertester's name who I left off
"I agree with Halaster"  -- Riev

Reminder, this is going in on Sunday April 2.
"I agree with Halaster"  -- Riev

This is now live!

As a result of the combat overhaul, everyone's shield use skill may appear lower.  It has not gone down, rather the caps have been raised for balanced (miscreant, laborer, stalker),  light combat (scout, soldier, infiltrator), and heavy combat (fighter, raider, enforcer)
"I agree with Halaster"  -- Riev