Combat System

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Re: Combat System

Post  Rainbay on Thu Mar 11, 2010 3:48 pm

Admin wrote:I'm just thinking aloud here, but here's my proposed list of action costs:

Basic Move: 1 point
Short Blade Attack: 1 Point
Throwing Attack: 1 Point
1-Handed Axe Attack: 2 Points
1-Handed Blunt Attack: 2 Points
1-Handed Sword Attack: 2 Points
Spear Attack: 2 Points
2-Handed Sword Attack: 3 Points
2-Handed Axe Attack: 3 Points
Spellcasting: 3 Points
2-Handed Blunt Attack: 4 points

Furthermore, if you only take one action in a round, you may use any action regardless of point cost. For example, say you're an Orc with 30 speed wielding a massive warhammer. Normally, you couldn't swing it at all, which is just silly. So, as long as this orc only takes one action that round, he can swing his warhammer. Basically, point costs wouldn't matter at all until you start taking more than one action in a round.

This would allow 10 short blade attacks per round at 100 speed. Though weak, they are accurate enough that 10 short blade attacks would massively overpower 2 warhammer attacks.

How are we going to handle accuracy if weapon speed is worked in? Should we make all weapons have no modifier to accuracy?

Also, don't forget hand to hand and marksmen speeds.
For hand to hand I'm thinking it would be 1, and for marksman, I'm thinking these:
Bow: 2
Crossbow: 3
Throwing star: 1
Dart:2
Javlin: 3
Throwing knives: 2
Throwing axe: 3

That's just a rough model, based on the one you set up. I still feel unsure about allowing 10 attacks per round.

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Re: Combat System

Post  Admin on Thu Mar 11, 2010 3:53 pm

Ah, you're right! I had planned them, but forgot to post them. It was:

Throwing: 1
Archery: 2
Crossbow: 3
Hand-to-Hand: 1

Massive number of shortblade attacks would be mitigated because of their extremely low damage, not to mention the Damage reduction, which we may or may not be using. I can't really tell. But you are right. Maybe I should reduce 2-handed Blunt to 3 action points?
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Re: Combat System

Post  Rainbay on Thu Mar 11, 2010 3:59 pm

Admin wrote:Ah, you're right! I had planned them, but forgot to post them. It was:

Throwing: 1
Archery: 2
Crossbow: 3
Hand-to-Hand: 1

Massive number of shortblade attacks would be mitigated because of their extremely low damage, not to mention the Damage reduction, which we may or may not be using. I can't really tell. But you are right. Maybe I should reduce 2-handed Blunt to 3 action points?

Well, if you make hammers stonger and more accurate than a waraxe, they can keep the longer wind up time I think. I'm still unsure about the whole 10 attacks per round with short blades... that's just so many. Perhaps we should boost the action point cost of everything by 1. So short blade costs 2, long blade 3, warhammer 5, and so on and so forth. That really only hurts short blades and the really speedy weapons, while leaving the really heavy one's intack. I don't know though, it will really matter on how we handle weapon damage and armor. There are many ways we can do this, and the choice is ours.

Also, I like the idea of differen types of thrown objects having different speeds. Perhaps we could add different types of bows as well.
Long bow and short bow
And for crossbows normal crossbows and repeating crossbows.

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Re: Combat System

Post  Dagoth Durr on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:05 pm

If damage reduction on heavy armor is severe enough then I think it's still fine. What use is 10 attacks per round if they all do 1 damage? And of course that's assuming they all hit in the first place.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Admin on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:06 pm

I don't think we really need either Long Bows or Repeating crossbows, as neither seems to have been invented in the Elder Scrolls universe yet. I'm on the fence about different sorts of throwing weapon speeds, because, while it would be more realistic, it wouldn't be near as simple. I also wouldn't mind bumping the cost of everything up by one, either. What about move, though? Should that remain the same, do you think?
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Re: Combat System

Post  Rainbay on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:09 pm

Dagoth Durr wrote:If damage reduction on heavy armor is severe enough then I think it's still fine. What use is 10 attacks per round if they all do 1 damage? And of course that's assuming they all hit in the first place.

Well, as we had it, daggers and short blades get a bonus to their chance to hit. That's part of why I was worried. But you're right, by the time you have 100 speed, enemies probably have enough damage reduction to take it.

Perhaps have backstabbe slower, and take +2 or some such "speed points". So attempting to backstab with a dagger would use 3 "speed points" but with a warhammer it would take 6.

Does that sound alright?

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Re: Combat System

Post  Admin on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:11 pm

I still don't get backstabbing with a warhammer. Just doesn't make a whole lot of sense, but then again I haven't really been following this thread due to illness, so I don't know what you fellows have decided upon yet.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Dagoth Durr on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:12 pm

Admin wrote:I don't think we really need either Long Bows
I could have sworn there was a "bonemold longbow" in the game.

Never seen repeating crossbows though. As I recall that's an Asian invention, which means they probably only have them over in Akavir.

I think "backstabbing" with a warhammer is more just walking up behind him and clobbering him right at the back of the head.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Rainbay on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:15 pm

Admin wrote:I don't think we really need either Long Bows or Repeating crossbows, as neither seems to have been invented in the Elder Scrolls universe yet. I'm on the fence about different sorts of throwing weapon speeds, because, while it would be more realistic, it wouldn't be near as simple. I also wouldn't mind bumping the cost of everything up by one, either. What about move, though? Should that remain the same, do you think?

Yes, I know they aren't invented. It's just that there are so few options for ranged weapons besides thrown. And I'm pretty sure they had longbows of some sort. And katanas are everywhere, why not some repeating crossbows as well? But they aren't needed I suppose.
I don't really see how the speed for thrown weapons would be that complex if different styles had different speeds. But I could always be mistaken.
As for movement, I think those should remain the same, personally.

And for backstabbing with a warhammer, I don't really mean "Stabbing". More along the lines of carefully aiming with it to strike a vulnerable point on the body. And what I wrote in the THIEVES thread was that different weapons would have inate bonuses to backstab chances. Shortblades and such would be higher, while heavy blunt weapons would actually have negative bonuses.

Also, should daggers and short swords have different attack speeds? That was part of the issue I took, the lack of seperation in the speed of the two. Perhaps move everything up one, but have daggers stay at a speed of 1 with hand to hand, while short swords get a speed of 2.

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Re: Combat System

Post  Dagoth Durr on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:26 pm

Thinking about it I think I liked the old system better, where light weapons like daggers were very accurate but did little damage, while heavy ones like claymores did a lot of damage but tended to miss. It meant (rather realistically) that light weapons were good against unarmored agile foes, and heavy weapons for armored, slow foes.

Let's see, I think I can bullshit up some ranged weapons.

Thrown: Shuriken, Chakram, Dart, Throwing Knife, Throwing Axe, Javelin

Bows: Short Bow, Longbow, Recurved Shortbow, Recurved Longbow

Crossbow: Hand Crossbow, Crossbow, Heavy Crossbow, Arbalest

That's not even getting into the different makes. Bonemold, Dwemer, composite, maybe a special variety from Valenwood, or even something made out of Hist.

And bows at least can be further differentiated by their ammo. Different material types, and different arrow types. For example we could have armor piercing bodkin arrows in addition to normal ones.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Rainbay on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:32 pm

Dagoth Durr wrote:Thinking about it I think I liked the old system better, where light weapons like daggers were very accurate but did little damage, while heavy ones like claymores did a lot of damage but tended to miss. It meant (rather realistically) that light weapons were good against unarmored agile foes, and heavy weapons for armored, slow foes.

I'm inclined to agree with this, actually. Do you think we should have multiple actions per round though, based on speed? What we had before was speed/25 = number of actions to spend how you want.

The issue is that the accuracy of weapons was designed with the idea that every weapon would be the same speed in mind. In game, every weapon had the same accuracy, just using your attributes and abilities to decide if you hit. Also, the speed of weapons was uneffected by your speed stat (although it was affected in daggerfall). I don't know. There are just many ways we can do this, and the choice is ours.

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Re: Combat System

Post  Dagoth Durr on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:41 pm

Yeah I think speed should have an effect so it's not just a dump stat. But keep it much lower than the action point thing.

Perhaps divide every weapon into light or heavy. Do the same speed/25 thing to determine points (maximum of 4). Light weapons cost 1 point, heavy weapons cost 2. So you can get in 4 attacks with a silver tanto, but only 2 with a daedric warhammer at maximum.

Of course speed would still affect your movement speed so it should hopefully stay useful. Surely there's situations that will come up where you have to pursue/run from something.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Admin on Thu Mar 11, 2010 4:45 pm

That sounds fine. Now, I have a request for one of you fine gentlemen. Could you summarize what you've decided upon for combat thus far in one post? The thread is somewhat wandering and confused, and I can't really get a sense on what's going on. Besides, it should be helpful for you as well, having everything in one place so we know what to focus in on and improve upon.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Rainbay on Thu Mar 11, 2010 5:04 pm

I'll try to sum it up the best I can, but I may miss something.
For different parts of the body, you can have different pieces of armor. You roll a d10 to find out which part you hit normally. 1-4 is cuirass, 5-7 is legs, 8-9 is arms, and 10 is the head. If you want, you may try to make a called shot. This functions by increasing your odds of hitting one part of the body by doubling the number of numbers on the roll associated with it. So cuirass would become 1-8. However, when you make a called shot, you run the risk of missing entirely if you roll a number outside of the ones dedicated to that body part. This is decided before you even calculate hit rolls. The only bonus making a called shot gives is the chance to select a part of the enemy which is more lightly armored in order to increase damage. It was also suggested that for ease of use, unless specified attacks target torso instead of random.

Dodge for armor was suggested as being the characters agility - their armors encumberance. Thus light armors improve dodge because they are lighter. There was a lot of arguing back and forth, but I think we decided upon this idea more or less. I'm not quite sure how armor class factors in, but I'm sure it does somehow. Or perhaps armor class only affects the defence, not dodge while in armors. Depending on how armor skill is factored in, it would either be added to the dodge roll somehow. If it isn't, it was suggested that unarmored would get two dodge rolls since they have no real defence from their armor, since they have none.

Fatigue resurfaced too. Some people want a pool, others want it to act like a stat you need to roll under. We should probably have the fatigue thread unstickied and opened back up for discussion on this.

That brings us to the current, where we are discussing speed and action points.
I may have missed some things, for which I apologize.

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Re: Combat System

Post  Dagoth Durr on Thu Mar 11, 2010 5:09 pm

Thank you for navigating the this labyrinthine thread so I didn't have to.

I agree with most of what we've come to, but I think hit location should be random unless you make a called shot. If you're fencing with someone you're going to take whatever opening you get, and the chain of actions that determine what the opening will be are chaotic enough to justify a random roll.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Rainbay on Thu Mar 11, 2010 5:21 pm

Dagoth Durr wrote:Thank you for navigating the this labyrinthine thread so I didn't have to.

I agree with most of what we've come to, but I think hit location should be random unless you make a called shot. If you're fencing with someone you're going to take whatever opening you get, and the chain of actions that determine what the opening will be are chaotic enough to justify a random roll.

Yes, I think that was the system that was actually chosen.

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Re: Combat System

Post  Slotha Sil on Fri Mar 12, 2010 4:59 am

Rainbay wrote:I'm not quite sure how armor class factors in, but I'm sure it does somehow. Or perhaps armor class only affects the defence, not dodge while in armors. Depending on how armor skill is factored in, it would either be added to the dodge roll somehow. If it isn't, it was suggested that unarmored would get two dodge rolls since they have no real defence from their armor, since they have none.

Well, in-game, armor is only used to reduce damage using a multiplier based on AR (the big number shown under your paper doll). That included Unarmored as well. While Unarmored ought to just go for insane dodge, by skill combining with agility to beat encumbrance by an enviable margin, I'm treating armor exclusively as DR. Nobody seemed to object to it, so I just went on and assumed it was agreed upon. It does make combat much simpler, by eliminating defense rolls completely (apart from blocking) - Unarmored factors in against attack rolls, armor defense factors in against damage rolls.

[edit] Oh yes, and something we've forgotten: have we agreed on how to calculate hit points? I'm feeling partial towards large numbers, for the sake of mechanical simplicity (small numbers would require ugly DR and damage math and a lot of armors would have indistinguishable stats).
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Re: Combat System

Post  Slotha Sil on Sat Mar 13, 2010 4:07 pm

Gentlemen, here's my proposed attack formula:

weapon skill
+weapon skill attribute/2
+agility/2
+misc attack bonuses
______________________
-defense value*
-agility/2
-speed/4
-speed/4**
-misc defense bonuses

*This one is a bit complicated, so I'll do it separately instead of putting everything in one line.
**In case of a Weapon skill used to parry being tied to strength or endurance, replace speed here.

..........................Dodge - Unarmored skill/2, plus one of the following:
......................../
....................../.........Hand-to-hand/2 or weapon/2
..................../........ /
Defense value - Parry - two weapons (x/4 for x weapon + y/4 for y weapon)
....................\
......................Block skill/2 + Unarmed/4 or weapon/4

The point of this survival horror tree is to include every melee combat style into one fixed number. As you can see, I've split Skill component of the defense value into two blocks - 1/2 of it dependent on Unarmored skill, the other 1/2 dependent on the weapon you are using (meaning to simulate martial arts (Unarmored+Hand to hand), going berserk (Unarmored+ one/two weapons), and using a shield (Unarmored+Block+Hand to hand or one weapon).

This serves three purposes:
1)To balance defense value. I've had moderate trouble deciding on value of Unarmored, as it either lead to the unarmored character being untouchable, or murdered (daedric battleaxe hits at 8d10 and you can have 200 hit points at best). This way, tied to a number of skills, it will be reasonably strong, but nearly impossible to max out and turn you into a 150% sanctuary troll. No matter how you put it, Skill defense component can be no greater than 100.
2)To make sense. You dodge, you parry, you block with your shield. Your speed, dexterity, strength, or whatever, now all of it is taken into account when you use it in combat.
3)To increase tank survivability. The same trouble I had with Unarmored, I'm still having with armor skills and stats. But in a bad way: an armored - and thus encumbered - fighter forfeits an Unarmored bonus, and suffers from lowered agility as well, making him literally impossible to miss. This way, an armored fighter gets a modicum of defense from his weapon and shield (bonus no greater than 50, assuming mastery in both skills). I'm not sure how to treat shields yet, but so far I've decided to apply their encumbrance penalty twice - against agility, as normal, and against Unarmored, for being armor; this should largely negate possibility of breaking this.

Now, after you've been dismayed and intimidated by this libram ineffable damnation, I'd like to remind you that both the attacker's and the defender's numbers are fixed. Meaning, there's nothing to roll, nothing to calculate during combat. Both of those numbers depend entirely on skills and stats, which will only be recalculated at the end of session (and will be bloody easy to do, as they involve nothing but basic addition or division by 2 or 4 in obvious places). Attack bonuses due to weapons or potions are basic addition as well. Having both of those numbers written on your character sheet, this is what an attack roll looks like:

A - D = X, which you roll under.

{edit} Yes, forgot to mention - Unarmored bonus to defense is skill/2, rounded down, thus ranging from 2 for a cement salesman to 50 for a dire lawyer. Block bonus to defense is skill/4, ranging from 1 to 25. But I've already said that. Napping time!
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Re: Combat System

Post  Outlander on Sat Mar 13, 2010 9:43 pm

Rad.

My one objection here would be that I much prefer having a separate defense roll. Maybe it's purely aesthetic, and maybe I'm insane, but I find that I feel much more involved in the combat when I have do decide how to defend against a particular attack. I also want some options regarding how to attack beyond weapon choice. I feel like this current setup, though admittedly quite elegant, would effectively devolve into DPS mashing. I want to work out some method of varied attacks into the basic combat system so we don't end up having to resort to some kind of "special attack" shenanigans for non-casters, which always end up feeling tacked on, at least to me. I realize that Morrowind's combat was pretty much straight DPS, and only a fool doesn't have "Always Use Best Attack" on at all times, but that was really the worst part of the game. Just about the only thing that Oblivion really did better. At the very least, we should have some differentiation between heavy and light attacks.

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Re: Combat System

Post  Slotha Sil on Sun Mar 14, 2010 5:21 am

Outlander wrote:Rad.

My one objection here would be that I much prefer having a separate defense roll. Maybe it's purely aesthetic, and maybe I'm insane, but I find that I feel much more involved in the combat when I have do decide how to defend against a particular attack.


Well, you do. Depending on what your equipment is. You can't block if you have no shield, you can't reliably dodge if you're tucked in armor, and if you have a weapon or a free hand, you're going to add it to the mix in order to avoid getting axed. This calculation assumes you're doing everything you can to defend yourself. All the components are clearly visible in the formula, though, so if you don't want to use something you can ignore it, to your detriment (although, arguably, using hands to parry with a Fire Atronach would be anticlimactic).

I do see where you're coming from, but I don't think hiding behind a tower shield to avoid arrows or fireballs needs special rules.

Also, to integrate opposed rolls, I'd have to rework this from scratch.

Outlander wrote:I also want some options regarding how to attack beyond weapon choice. I feel like this current setup, though admittedly quite elegant, would effectively devolve into DPS mashing. I want to work out some method of varied attacks into the basic combat system so we don't end up having to resort to some kind of "special attack" shenanigans for non-casters, which always end up feeling tacked on, at least to me. I realize that Morrowind's combat was pretty much straight DPS, and only a fool doesn't have "Always Use Best Attack" on at all times, but that was really the worst part of the game. Just about the only thing that Oblivion really did better. At the very least, we should have some differentiation between heavy and light attacks.

There was discussion aboard about special attacks for each kind of weapon and things like that. I'm waiting to see what comes out of it before doing anything. I'm certainly not helping make a game where non-casters only have the option of "basic attack".

[edit]Now that I've mentioned it, don't kill me, but could we integrate martial maneuvers that do more damage or have other effects, and are fueled by fatigue just like real spells are fueled by magicka? Magic has its elements and things various schools can do, martial craft has its weapon types and things various schools can do. Instead of a spell list, a warrior would have a list of tricks and techniques he has spent time and effort to master, some of them quite underwhelming and virtually effortless, to vertigo-inducing cross-school combos that leave him breathless and the target, well, hitpointless and in various states of encripplement. And the best of all, we could use the same system for attacks, damage, saves, effects and so on.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Dagoth Durr on Thu Mar 18, 2010 6:30 am

I dunno, I kind of like the current fatigue system.

That said, there is the danger of making fighters boring compared to their magical counterparts.

On the other hand, magic seems REALLY common on Nirn, so it's probably not out of the ordinary for an Imperial Legionnaire to know a few spells. And did anyone in Morrowind really ever play a pure warrior with no magic ability whatsoever? This isn't DnD where every character will be divided along neat lines of magic/physical/stealth.

EDIT:Actually I suppose this could work with the current fatigue system. Just have a very small number of extremely effective physical maneuvers they could utilize that automatically drop them down a fatigue category upon use.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Slotha Sil on Fri Apr 16, 2010 5:20 am

Aaaand... blarg.

There's no way to make DR that doesn't involve use of a calculator to work out damage. I'm proposing we give up and go back to the older idea of armor providing defense value, and armor skill modded by armor quality factoring in the attack formula.

I've also though about another possibility. Is there a system out there where your damage depends on by how much you've beaten the defense value? If we make something out of this, we'll have combat that involves only one roll, probably a record of some kind when it comes to game design, and armor will actually serve as both deflection and DR because it prevents or lessens the damage you would take.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Dagoth Durr on Fri Apr 16, 2010 10:16 am

Dark Heresy has a simple numerical armor value that just deducts points of damage before they're applied.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Slotha Sil on Fri Apr 16, 2010 12:50 pm

Dagoth Durr wrote:Dark Heresy has a simple numerical armor value that just deducts points of damage before they're applied.

Yes, but our system has damage ranging from 1d5+x to 8d10+x filtered through 60 kinds of armor that run off a skill that goes from 5 to 100. About the only way I see involves percentile DR, and having players calculate 67% of 32 will slow down play. Any kind of subtraction-based system will involve very tiny, carefully chosen numbers, so armor types will only be distinguishable on paper and the skill would barely manifest. We need a fundamentally different attack/damage system, or we need to drop armor skill, or to zip calc.exe together with rules documents.

[edit] Actually, I kind of see how this would work. Armor reduces the number you have to roll under in order to score; we can add speed on your side to rebalance the equation (and also prevent speed from being a dump stat). The margin between your roll and the defense value will limit you maximal damage, thus imitating DR.

Though, it's not perfect. Damage could vary wildly because of the die involved (some could argue that inherently risky combat comes as a plus) and light weapons would be more intuitive to use against armored foes, because the attack bonus makes for consistent damage, as opposed to heavy bruisers that will be more likely to miss and rarely deal full damage. Some work will be needed to make sure that heavy weapons always outdamage light ones on average against armor... or, we could pull the knightly martial arts card. Wrestling and daggers were the only reliable way to take down an armored knight in single combat. Halberds and warhammers were used by massed troops.
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Re: Combat System

Post  Saint Jiub on Wed Apr 21, 2010 10:55 am

Here's a fresh idea on how to handle armor. It's a two-part system that takes into account armor skill as well as gear quality:
Armor subtracts a certain number of damage from each damage die that hits you. The really shitty ones, like netch leather, might only subtract one, where daedric armor might subtract 8. The damage of a die can never be reduced below 1, so armor won't completely negate hits, but it will reduce the damage you take.
Armor will only protect against a certain number of damage dice, based on your skill level. Just for the sake of the example, let's say heavy armor will protect against one die per 10 skill points, medium will be one die per 15, and light will be one die per 20.
I still have to figure out how dodging works in this equation, but this way we satisfy the damage reduction and skill dependent aspects of armor without homogenizing all the gear like it's Oblivion.
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