PDA

View Full Version : Ranged Combat Brainstorm Thread


Old Coach
January 13, 2012, 04:03
Magnate indicated that we should throw around some ideas for fixing ranged combat in V4.

I have no strong feelings, but my DnD background gives me some biases.

I like for Dex to be more important than STR, Especially for crit chances.

I would like Rangers to be significantly better than Warriors at ranged combat with bows/xbows.

I would like Rogues to be some better than non-ranger class with Ranged.

I don't think adjusting the Ranged skill in the char.txt file had enough of an impact in old ANg. Not sure how it works in the new combat system, but it would be nice if Rangers also dealt a little more damage with ranged weapons, so maybe attach some damage modifiers to the skill.

I like the hit penalty for using a bow at point blank range. Maybe Rangers could avoid this.

Other thoughts?

Derakon
January 13, 2012, 04:46
It's straightforward to simply unify ranged and melee combat and then apply a few tweaks like the melee-range penalty. The only real problem with that approach is that we end up with four combat skills: melee finesse and prowess, and ranged finesse and prowess. That gets to the point that I think we might want to simply omit the combat skills from display on the character sheet altogether -- they'll be folded into your Fight and Shoot displays anyway.

At that point, it's just a matter of deciding how the different bows should work and what kinds of skill growths the different races/classes get. I'd say it should work something like this:

Sling: 20% finesse, 80% prowess
Shortbow: 80% finesse, 20% prowess
Longbow: 60% finesse, 40% prowess
Light crossbow: 40% finesse, 60% prowess
Heavy crossbow: 10% finesse, 90% prowess

Of course, realistically characters with high prowess should get faster crossbow shots, since they can cock the crossbow more quickly. I don't know if that's worth breaking consistency for though.

Critical hits should probably work just like they do in melee, whatever way we end up going for that. Currently crit chance is (applied finesse ^ 2 + applied prowess ^ 2) / 2500 ("applied" as in "after multiplying by balance/heft").

Once this is done, you can tweak the classes easily as you see fit. My thoughts:Warrior: good finesse, excellent prowess
Ranger: superb finesse, good prowess
Rogue: good finesse, good prowess
Paladin: average finesse, excellent prowess
Priest: bad finesse, average prowess
Mage: bad finesse, bad prowess(I realize this completely cocks up the concept of "average", but hey, we're dealing with heroes here, right?)

This does end up meaning that launchers will probably be much less useful for priests and mages. Under the old system, class had almost zero impact on your ability to use ranged weapons -- it gave you some to-hit bonus, and rangers got bonus shots when using bows, but that's it. There will be little reason for a mage to use a bow now except for to get stat bonuses.

Estie
January 13, 2012, 08:42
Maybe allow the mage average finesse; I dont see them as "more casty" than priests. Someone even suggested that dex should affect spell failure, so it would make sense to give mages a little finesse combat ability.

Magnate
January 13, 2012, 10:01
It's straightforward to simply unify ranged and melee combat and then apply a few tweaks like the melee-range penalty. The only real problem with that approach is that we end up with four combat skills: melee finesse and prowess, and ranged finesse and prowess. That gets to the point that I think we might want to simply omit the combat skills from display on the character sheet altogether -- they'll be folded into your Fight and Shoot displays anyway.Do we need a separate skill for ranged prowess? I can see that the skill of hitting things at range is qualitatively different from the skill of finding an opening in melee, but is the skill of drawing back your bow or cocking your crossbow really that different from the skill of putting weight behind your blow? We're really just talking about a skill of "applied strength", aren't we? Not that I'd die in a ditch over it - I'm quite happy to add a new skill if it is necessary, and more than happy for all of them to disappear from the character sheet (which has long needed a redesign anyway). EDIT: for that matter, I'm not even 100% certain about two separate finesse skills. I think we could happily make do with one if we wanted.Sling: 20% finesse, 80% prowess
Shortbow: 80% finesse, 20% prowess
Longbow: 60% finesse, 40% prowess
Light crossbow: 40% finesse, 60% prowess
Heavy crossbow: 10% finesse, 90% prowess

Of course, realistically characters with high prowess should get faster crossbow shots, since they can cock the crossbow more quickly. I don't know if that's worth breaking consistency for though.I have a suggestion, which may be a neat solution or a terrible kludge depending on your POV. While we use the same basic inputs to the calculations for number of attacks, hit chance, crit chance and damage mult for both melee and ranged combat (namely fin, prow, balance and heft/draw), we don't necessarily need exactly the same formulae. So for launchers, prowess should be at least as important as finesse when determining number of shots: something like (fin * balance) + (prow * draw) all / whatever normalising constant we need (200?). Similarly finesse could contribute to damage mult in a way that it doesn't in melee.

I'd have to do some playing with a spreadsheet before I was certain about this, but does the principle sound ok?This does end up meaning that launchers will probably be much less useful for priests and mages. Under the old system, class had almost zero impact on your ability to use ranged weapons -- it gave you some to-hit bonus, and rangers got bonus shots when using bows, but that's it. There will be little reason for a mage to use a bow now except for to get stat bonuses.I don't think there's any problem with this - missile combat is way too good in V despite the changes to slay and brand mults. I can't think of another fantasy game where early game casters rely so much on slings and bows. If priests and magi end up too weak as a result, that'll be all the more incentive to overhaul the spell lists.

Tobias
January 13, 2012, 11:05
This does end up meaning that launchers will probably be much less useful for priests and mages. Under the old system, class had almost zero impact on your ability to use ranged weapons -- it gave you some to-hit bonus, and rangers got bonus shots when using bows, but that's it. There will be little reason for a mage to use a bow now except for to get stat bonuses.
I already play like this for my mages.

PowerWyrm
January 13, 2012, 13:27
Mages should use spells, not bows, so bad ranged abilities is ok. With the new system, priests will be horrible to play (bad melee, bad ranged abilities, no offensive spell until OoD). Since I don't see why priests should be good with bows either, I'd like to see them getting a new prayer at low level, something like Cause light Wounds which would do a small amount of damage, to compensate for the loss of ranged power.

Magnate
January 13, 2012, 14:25
Mages should use spells, not bows, so bad ranged abilities is ok. With the new system, priests will be horrible to play (bad melee, bad ranged abilities, no offensive spell until OoD). Since I don't see why priests should be good with bows either, I'd like to see them getting a new prayer at low level, something like Cause light Wounds which would do a small amount of damage, to compensate for the loss of ranged power.+1. This is exactly the kind of adjustment I had in mind when casters suddenly become a lot worse at archery.

Estie
January 13, 2012, 15:29
Priests are horrible at melee as is and can barely make a living till OoD. I dont know _how_ horrible they will be come the new system, but a hard start isnt the end of the world.