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Old December 1, 2020, 06:26   #31
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Originally Posted by DavidMedley View Post
Let me make a few tweaks. I'll save the rest for the next version. End of this weekend a good deadline?
For you, yes - for me, I make no promises.
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Old December 1, 2020, 15:53   #32
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Haha, yes, I was only deadlining myself
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Old December 6, 2020, 19:57   #33
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How Many Turns of Stunning?

This is going to be a bit rambly as I'm vocalizing my inner dialogue. Also, I'm referencing the nightly not 4.2.1 stable.

I'm making some tweaks right now. One open question is: How many turns of stunning should Maim Foe give?

I introduced the spell with 1d5+5 turns, same as the wand. Nick introduced a really nice feature that I wanted all along, which is that it only stuns when the associated blow(s) hit. He also cut the turns of stun down to 3. The intention was it would be 3 turns per hit, but stun doesn't stack like that, so instead it's 3 turns if any blows hit.

I think 3 is way too low, but what is the right amount? I am currently experimenting with 6 (because I don't have to program anything if I just change the number, heh). But I think it's still too low. My premise is that casting the spell should be a little better than using the wand against an adjacent foe. Here's a calculation I just did, presuming you want to keep a foe stunned:

CL16 Human 13 INT 32% 1.0 blows ~90% chance to hit
wand: 1 8.6% fail->1.095 turns wanding 7 turns attacking = 0.79 blows/turn
spell: 32% fail + 10% miss->1.47 turns casting 5 turns attacking +1 from cast -- 0.80 blows/turn

Some things not included:
- Wand takes inventory
- Wand can be used from distance
- Wand charges cost small amounts of money
- Maim takes SP
- Maim gives small HP healing
- Turns when enemy is not stunned the player takes extra damage
- Bump attack blow grants chance for shield bash and 5% of max SP
- Shield bash may stun which can go to waste or eliminate need for wand/cast
- Monster (or player) will die, wasting any remaining stun

At level 16 not having to buy or pay to recharge a wand is a really big factor. Something I was thinking about way back when was that spells that don't activate if you miss your blow(s) could have lower casting difficulty, so that's probably part of the solution here. Also it's not unusual for a half-caster to not be able to get much use out of a spell that just became available. So at this level it probably *shouldn't* beat using a wand, but it should be a viable choice.

BG spells that only do something when blow(s) land:
- Whirlwind Attack
- Maim Foe
- Forceful Blow
- (partially) Leap into Battle

Any thoughts are welcome.

Last edited by DavidMedley; December 9, 2020 at 16:27. Reason: Thought of additional ways this experiment is imprecise
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Old December 6, 2020, 20:46   #34
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CL16 Human with a heavy weapon and 1.0 blows is not the seminal test case, it's just where I'm at on my current play-through.
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Old December 6, 2020, 20:56   #35
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Quick question I've been meaning to ask that is kind of related to Blackguards...

I apologize if it has already been answered, my searching did not find an answer.

Blackguards can taunt, which aggravates monsters and makes them less likely to use a ranged attack. My question is - is this true for all sorts of aggravation in Angband????? When equipment aggravates monsters, are they less likely to use a ranged attack?
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Old December 6, 2020, 21:10   #36
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No, that's taunt only. And taunt doesn't aggravate (though that's something I've considered).
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Old December 6, 2020, 23:10   #37
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Update on Maim deliberations: 6 turns seems pretty reasonable, actually. I'm not trying to tinker with anything that will require a lot of testing or introduce bugs. Just trying to get to "good enough for now."

Did find a pretty interesting bug, though, where Maim was actually guaranteeing X hits instead of giving X blows. I'll have that bugfix up sometime today.
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Old December 7, 2020, 02:39   #38
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I dont think Taunt should aggravate. One thing I discovered wielding Doombringer as a Blackguard was just how situationally useful Aggravate us, especially for a Blackguard, which is probably the class thats best at dealing with waves of monsters, with the possible exception of Priest. Its especially good for luring monsters out of vaults.

So, I feel like having a temporart source of aggravation would be incredibly powerful and attaching it to a spell that is already incredibliy good is probably too much. If we wanted to attach Aggravate to something, Im inclined to say it should be attached to a spell that is already less powerful (maaybe Howl of the Damned, though I dont know how that interacts with fear).
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Old December 8, 2020, 23:47   #39
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Another Maim Foe thought experiment:
Human BG CL:28 INT:12 1.6 blows
Wand 93% success->1.075 turns to stun, 7*1.6=11.2 blows / 8.075 turns = 1.39
Maim 88% success * 90% to hit->1.26 turns to stun, (5*1.6=8 blows + 1) / 6.26 turns = 1.44

So as the fail rate drops it eventually gets better than using a wand, with all the caveats above. And at CL30 it increases to 2 blows, around the time blows are climbing due to stat gain.
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Old December 21, 2020, 08:02   #40
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Well I played blackguard and it was not an enjoyable experience.

In the early game, he is a cripple; I was carrying 2 stacks of 40 !clw and recalled when they were used up. Instead of a simple pressing of the rest key, I must click the "drink clw" macro multiple times and keep an eye on satiation.

His spell set, when it eventually comes online, is worse than a warriors. A detect monster spell that cant be used before you fight something ? How is that going to be useful. I carried the book because I wanted to play "as intended", but on top I was also carrying a staff of detect evil, like a warrior, to have some reliable detection at the time I need it - that is _before_ I start exploring and looking for trouble. If I was forced to play again, I wouldnt bother with the book.

Similar for berserk rage. Instead of a reliable stack of potions that I can drink before the fight starts, with no fail chance, while confused, blind and oom, I am supposed to use the spell with the exact same effect but which comes with a long list of drawbacks ? What is the idea here ?

So I made it to the endgame, 40ish clvl, 140 int, all books studied and ready to kill some high end uniques. For that, I want to buff up, right ? That means I must make sure I fight something weak first to get mana, then cast buffs in the right order - Werewolf last otherwise I cant do anymore casting - and even though I never touched bloodlust (I only saw the -speed detriment, maybe there are more - the description is vague, but thats plenty to stop me from ever using that spell), the mana requirements combined with the fail chance is such that I would run oom often before finishing the buffing sequence. So I just fought without werewolf active, which is better anyway if I also want to debuff the unique.

All this is far too intricate and prone to failure a procedure to be an effective tool for advancing the purpose of winning the game. You can play that way, you might even enjoy it, but its like playing a bookless artifactless hobbit mage - purely an exercise, refusing to take advantage of the tools at hand.

So after going through the tedium of yet another buff round to engage Drauglin, my casting of werewolf form failed (again), I retried, accidentally clicked yes when prompted to confirm a casting attempt with not enough mana and watched while Drauglin mauled my paralyzed self. I am not sorry it ended there.

We got rid of the endless identification sessions with rune id, and I am grateful for that; I find playing blackuard in the lategame an ordeal of similar magnitude.
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