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I was messing around with magically locked doors this morning, and I discovered that the key call — get_unlock_spell_strength() — is totally undocumented. I don't know if anybody has bothered to work out how it works before, but here's what appears to happen.

 

The strength of an unlock spell appears to be calculated by (Unlock spell level * 2) + (Mage Spells skill / 2) + 5. Weirdly, the Mage Spells value is rounded up, even though BoA normally rounds down. I didn't check whether Magery affects it, but I assume that (as usual) Magery would be calculated as extra levels of Mage Spells. So, for example, a mage with Unlock level 2, Mage Spells 10, has an unlock strength of (2 * 2) + (10 / 5) + 5 = 14.

 

The default magic door script has a double unlocking mechanic, where first you have to cast an Unlock spell that releases the magic and then you have to pick the lock. The lock difficulty is the same for both, which seems sort of unreasonable because the default party starts with a Tool Use of 4, while the minimum unlocking strength for a spell is 10 (and can be attained by increasing Mage Spells once from the default party). Similarly, at high levels, with an Unlock spell of, say, 3, and a Mage Spells of, say, 17, the unlock spell strength would be about 20, which probably far exceeds Tool Use at high levels.

 

The default door script unlocks if the unlock strength is twice the lock difficulty, which means that Unlock 3 + Mage Spells 17 is equivalent to Tool Use 10. Thus, you might be able to get away with replacing a tool user with a mage in some circumstances. Except that, weirdly, the default magic door doesn't unlock this way, so if there are magically locked doors, you still need the tool user.

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