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Old October 27, 2019, 07:00   #1
bron
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Random ranting about 4.2.0 after the recent competitions

<poorly thought out ranting>
Devices are overpowered. Wands of annihilation should be removed entirely. The "device skill" damage boost should be removed. Recharging is too easy and too effective: the chance of a recharge mis-fire should be hugely increased (e.g. 5x), and the number of charges added to the wands/staffs should mimic the starting value, regardless of the skill/level of the caster. Sauron is way too easy to kill; his chance of casting a spell should be increased to 1 in 3, and his HP returned to 11K or 12K. Similarly, Morgoth should have his chance of casting a spell be increased to 1 in 4.
</poorly thought out ranting>
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Old October 27, 2019, 10:33   #2
Voovus
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Devices are only overpowered in conjunction with Recharge.
Recharge needs fixing.
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Old October 27, 2019, 11:33   #3
Nick
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Yes, recharge needs plenty of work.
Yes, devices probably need the attack boost removed.

While we're at it, mage's Tap spell is also OP, and I have plans for a downside.

Sauron currently casts 1 in 2, and Morgoth 1 in 3 - are you saying they should cast less often?

As for Sauron's HP, the plan was to make that fight more dangerous and less tedious - I'd rather do some of: increase his spell power; trim his spell list so they're more dangerous; increase his melee damage.

Thoughts?
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Old October 27, 2019, 12:51   #4
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I thought the competitions would be a great way to get feedback for all the changes that the game has seen.

Would any competitors be generous enough to give their thoughts on the classes we've played so far?
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Old October 27, 2019, 14:58   #5
Ingwe Ingweron
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While I agree with the direction of much of what's been said, I'm not sure I agree with the magnitude. In the hands of a gnome mage, devices have great power, which is what they're supposed to for that particular race. What would the experience have been like playing a half-troll or half-orc mage? What would it be for a human? The danger of monsters have been greatly increased, what would the experience have been like without "monsters learn" activated?

I don't think game balance decisions can be made so readily based on the few play-throughs we've had so far, especially the degree of what those changes should be.
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Old October 27, 2019, 22:13   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick View Post
Sauron currently casts 1 in 2, and Morgoth 1 in 3
Would that it were so. But AFAICT, it's just not true. The interactions with the "innate" flag in make_ranged_attack in mon-attack.c appear to make the actual rate be (spell_freq * freq_innate), which for Sauron and Morgoth makes it half the stated spell_freq. This certainly agrees with my experiences, which is part of why taking down Sauron and Morgoth is comparatively easy in 4.2.0. Note that the game itself agrees with this: if you use the '/' command to look at the "lore" for Morgoth, it says that he casts 1 time in 6, and Sauron 1 time in 4.

I had thought that this was deliberate - that the spell frequency was toned down to make them easier to defeat, so I was proposing a middle ground. If this is in fact just a mistake, then by all means crank the frequencies all the way back up to their previous values.

Last edited by bron; October 27, 2019 at 22:22.
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Old October 27, 2019, 22:33   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nick View Post
As for Sauron's HP, the plan was to make that fight more dangerous and less tedious - I'd rather do some of: increase his spell power; trim his spell list so they're more dangerous; increase his melee damage.
I think that this is an excellent plan! Have Sauron casts lots of spells, Wolf-Sauron extra fast and hits hard, etc. (Dragon-Sauron breathing Time, Force, and Gravity would be paticularly annoying!). I only suggested the more HP because currently Sauron is too easy to beat. But fixing the spell frequency is likely to solve that issue in a better way.
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Old October 27, 2019, 22:38   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ingwe Ingweron View Post
I don't think game balance decisions can be made so readily based on the few play-throughs we've had so far, especially the degree of what those changes should be.
Actually, I completely agree. I was (am) just shooting off my mouth. Good discussions though!
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Old October 28, 2019, 03:29   #9
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i do not understand devices at all.

So - a wand of annihilation has in the description that it does 250 damage, and then you get a bonus depending on your devices stat, that at most is 25% or similar. Let's say 300 for ease of calculations.

A ranger does 500+ damage a round with arrows; a warrior 400-600 dps. Even a rogue or paladin will do 350+ dps.

Ok granted, these are melee stats, but, they put a WoA to shame. And you still have to consider charges, AND you basically foregoe melee in the lower DLs as the bigger, and more-XP dropping mobs can drain charges.

So basically a WoA for me is just a mage spell that doesnt use mana, when potions of restore mana are so ridiculously plentiful, i have to sell them to prevent being overweighted.

What am i missing here? summon @Derakon
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Old October 28, 2019, 03:46   #10
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Melee: has about a 70-80% hit rate. Requires you to stand in melee range, which means around 20-40% of your turns, depending, will be spent on healing, repositioning, etc. Even ignoring that standing in melee range is tactically problematic (you're pretty much stuck with Phase Door to break LOS, and that doesn't always work even in a destructed zone), that means that your actual damage output is charitably 600 * .8 * .8 = 384. Odds are good it'll be lower -- if you have a 75% hit chance, have to heal or reposition in 1/4th of turns, and your weapon is rated at 500 damage, then your effective DPS is 500 * .75 * .75 = 281 damage/turn.

Ranged: Rangers are OP in the endgame, nobody disputes that. So long as they have decent arrows they're going to win, and win faster than anyone else. They also have accuracy to contend with, just like melee characters, so their true damage output will be lower than the listed numbers, but they don't take melee damage in exchange. And even with the nerf to extra shots they're still really safe thanks to the "bullet time" effect. Their only concern is running out of arrows.

Devices: Wand of Annihilation is a level-60 device. Level-50 Gnome Mages get a device skill of around 120 as I recall? So they're getting 60% more damage from that wand, for around 400 damage per use. Mana Storm in comparison has damage of IIRC 350, and a higher failure rate, so Annihilation clearly beats your spell options for DPS. Device failure rate tends to be in the upper 80's to lower 90's, which makes it more reliable than melee and archery as well. The strict DPS doesn't necessarily beat those options, but again it's very safe, and unlike the ranger there's no chance of you running out of ranged combat ability -- even if all your wands broke, you still have Mana Storm (or its distant second cousin, Chaos Strike) to fall back on.

That said, non-Gnome Mages get a considerably smaller device bonus, of only ~20-40%. And you may not find many wands, or you may get unlucky with them being destroyed either by recharging or by electrical attacks. They aren't game winners in and of themselves, at least not without potential 4.2 balance issues making them excessively reliable.
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