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Old March 21, 2012, 09:24   #1
Thraalbee
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uber ego items

Hi

Was hovering on dlvl 98 to finally get some useful armour for the end game and found this one after less than an hour's playing. Although most dragon armour is less powerful than in 3.3 (a positive change) it seems they are still on top of what you can get for non-artifacts. I see no problems with this one since it was found on dlvl 98, at that point it does not change the outcome much but makes combinations of other items easier and adds some welcome damage.
Code:
g) Power Dragon Scale Banded Armour of Hardiness (+84,+37) [23,+17] <+2>
     Dropped by a Pit Fiend at 4900 feet (level 98).
     
     +2 strength, constitution.
     Provides resistance to acid, lightning, fire, cold, poison, light,
     dark, sound, shards, chaos, disenchantment.
     Provides protection from confusion.
     Cannot be harmed by acid, electricity, fire, cold.
The staff below is great as it works now but if I understand correctly the +2 attack speed should also apply to make it even better. I am not sure that these heavy weapons need "+x attack speed". At least not if it is +x absolute numbers of blows instead of a percentage increase. The morning star below would also be unnecessary awesome with +2 attacks. Priests would get unproportiaonally much benefit from this property.

Code:
a) a Quarterstaff of Disruption (4d13) (+102,+95) <+200..>
     Found lying on the floor at 4750 feet (level 95).
     
     +2 attack speed.
     Slays undead (x3.00), demons (x2.39).
     Provides protection from blindness.
     Can be destroyed by acid, fire.
     
     Combat info:
     Receives 50% of your finesse score, 50% of your prowess score.
     3.3 blows/round.
     3.7x damage multiplier.
     Average damage/round: 368.2 vs. normal creatures, 645.4 vs.
     undead, 589 vs. demons, 594.6 vs. creatures not resistant to acid.

r) a Runed Morning Star of Disruption (5d11) (+205,+157) <+200..>
     Dropped by a Lesser Balrog at 3950 feet (level 79).
     
     Slays undead (x3.00).
     Branded with venom (x2.58), flames (x2.44).
     Provides resistance to fire.
     Cannot be harmed by fire.
     Can be destroyed by acid.
     
     Combat info:
     Receives 15% of your finesse score, 85% of your prowess score.
     1.8 blows/round.
     6.1x damage multiplier.
     Average damage/round: 418.6 vs. normal creatures, 584.2 vs.
     undead, 553.8 vs. creatures not resistant to acid, 553.2 vs.
     creatures not resistant to fire, 561 vs. creatures not resistant
     to poison.
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Old March 21, 2012, 19:05   #2
Magnate
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Thraalbeast View Post
Hi

Was hovering on dlvl 98 to finally get some useful armour for the end game and found this one after less than an hour's playing. Although most dragon armour is less powerful than in 3.3 (a positive change) it seems they are still on top of what you can get for non-artifacts. I see no problems with this one since it was found on dlvl 98, at that point it does not change the outcome much but makes combinations of other items easier and adds some welcome damage.
Yes, that's certainly great armour for resists, but it's not overpowered: the stat and damage boosts are minor, and, crucially, it only provides 40AC, which is pretty low for endgame body armour.
Quote:
The staff below is great as it works now but if I understand correctly the +2 attack speed should also apply to make it even better. I am not sure that these heavy weapons need "+x attack speed". At least not if it is +x absolute numbers of blows instead of a percentage increase. The morning star below would also be unnecessary awesome with +2 attacks. Priests would get unproportiaonally much benefit from this property.
Both these weapons are good without +2 attacks, but again not overpowered IMO. It's nice to see endgame weapons with decent slay and brand mults (nothing in the x1.5-1.9 range).

We're undecided about +attacks. There will, soon, be affixes that increase the balance or heft of a weapon, thereby indirectly increasing its applied finesse (and blows) or prowess (and damage). But that doesn't rule out a different affix for adding directly to blows. Some devs like the idea of being able to tinker directly with blows, others don't. It's certainly disproportionate, but that could be precisely the reason to use it: a weapon that any char gets 3 blows with, regardless of his/her finesse and prowess. Personally I'm undecided - I think it would be better to implement the balance and heft affixes first and see how that plays.
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Old March 21, 2012, 20:29   #3
Derakon
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Keep in mind that you can replicate +N blows by giving the weapon a finesse bonus of (N / heft). This does also have the side effect of making the player more accurate and giving them more common critical hits though.

My main concern about having a straight +blows is that it's disproportionately more powerful on prowess weapons used by prowess characters. I'm playing a paladin right now, and at clvl 30 I'm still getting only 1.4 blows/round -- but my total damage output is enough to get by because those blows are notably powerful. If I found a prowess weapon of roughly equivalent per-blow power but with +1 blows then suddenly I'd be doing massively more damage per round.

If you hand that same weapon to a rogue, they aren't going to be nearly as interested, because they don't have the prowess to use the weapon effectively. Normally we try to come up with some absolute valuation of a given affix with respect to a given weapon. I suspect this breaks down now that different classes have significantly different biases towards finesse or prowess. Functionally, about a third of the weapons in the game are junk to any given character.
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Old March 21, 2012, 22:10   #4
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I really like the new weapons system. Not fully balanced yet perhaps but definitely more interesting than before. But also some confusion. This weapon was very nice for a while. Massive damage (about 500-850 per round) and very frequent critical hits. But now suddenly stated damage output is crazy. It does not one-shot the bigger A's so I suspect it's still only very good but the listing is strange.


Code:
     
w) a Morning Star (Holy Avenger) (2d7) (+309,+329) <+111..>
     Dropped by a Great Swamp Wyrm at 4950 feet (level 99).
     
     +2 strength, dexterity.
     +1 wisdom.
     Slays evil creatures (x1.27), undead (x2.11), demons (x1.92).
     Provides protection from fear.
     Can be destroyed by acid, fire.
     Sustains dexterity.
     Blessed by the gods.  Grants the ability to see invisible things. 
     
     
     Combat info:
     Receives 15% of your finesse score, 85% of your prowess score.
     2.0 blows/round.
     8.0x damage multiplier.
     Average damage/round: 6593.2 vs. normal creatures, 6613.8 vs. evil
     creatures, 6627.5 vs. undead, 6624.4 vs. demons.
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Old March 21, 2012, 22:35   #5
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I think that's an error in the damage estimator / critical hit calculator. That's been reworked a bit recently so with luck it should be more accurate in the latest version.
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Old March 21, 2012, 23:59   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Derakon View Post
Normally we try to come up with some absolute valuation of a given affix with respect to a given weapon. I suspect this breaks down now that different classes have significantly different biases towards finesse or prowess. Functionally, about a third of the weapons in the game are junk to any given character.
This has always been the case, but the good thing is that the junk is now different for each char!

But seriously, it won't surprise anybody to know I've been thinking a lot about the valuations of items under the new system. I think we have two choices:

1. Value everything according to an "average" character: one with equal finesse and prowess, STR and DEX, melee skill and missile skill etc. etc. This will get the right result for weapons of 0.5-0.5 balance-heft, but will undervalue everything else (because a finesse char will get more out of a balanced weapon than Mr Average, and a prowess char will get more out of a hefty weapon).

2. Value everything according to the build that gets the most out of it. So weapons with bal >0.5 get rated by the damage that a high-DEX finesse char can do with them, and weapons with heft >0.5 get rated by the damage that a high-STR prowess char can do with them. This will give much more realistic values for most items, but it breaks the crucial rule of using the same basis of valuation for everything.

I am not currently sure which is the least worst option. Obviously interested to hear if anyone can think of more.
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