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Two things that I think should be in strategy central


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I've discovered two game mechanics that apply to the entire series that don't seem to be mentioned anywhere in any of the strategy centrals:

 

1. Luck affects turn order.

 

This mostly is important for Shapers who can't afford many points invested in quick action and don't want to ever invest in dexterity.

 

2. Melee weapons have a hidden accuracy bonus that is equal to 5*damage dice.

 

Melee weapons essentially add on an undocumented and hidden bonus to the PCs melee skill. This can be easily shown by uneqiupping your PC's weapon and attacking a few rogues. You'll find that suddenly your character can't hit the broadside of a battle alpha. I don't know if this also applies to missile weapons, never having much use for them. But it wouldn't surprise me if they worked the same way.

 

This is certainly an important consideration as to what weapon to chose for your PC. As a direct example, in G4 the Oozing Blade is 12-60 damage and the Shaped Blade 14-70. The Oozing Blade also has a listed +5 to hit. But given the above info, it will actually be 5% less accurate than the shaped blade, given that it has two less damage dice. This info also calls into question the value in general of weapons that have few damage dice in exchange for bonuses to stats. Is it worth having two more parry and quick action if your sword also has a 10, 20 or even 30 percent accuracy deficit compared to the blander but harder hitting sword?

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Interesting.

 

I've discovered two game mechanics that apply to the entire series

Did you actually test every game? Sometimes there are unexpected exceptions even when games before and after share a behavior.

 

1. Luck affects turn order.

Interesting. This makes sense. Did you test to see if it has the same effect as Dex or Quick Action, or a lesser effect (as I'd guess), etc?

 

 

2. Melee weapons have a hidden accuracy bonus that is equal to 5*damage dice.

This is well known, although usually phrased differently -- and it applies not just to melee weapons, but to most attacks in most SW games:

 

Every attack/ability has a DIE MULTIPLIER (i.e., 1-6 or 1d6) tied to the ability definition it uses, and a BASE BONUS tied to the precise weapon equipped or spell/ability used. You get one die of damage, and an extra 5% to hit, for every point of BASE BONUS as well as every point of SUPPLEMENTAL BONUS which in most games adds a primary stat (Str, Dex, or Int), plus a category stat (Battle Magic, Melee Weapons), and sometimes a secondary stat (Blademaster, Spellcraft) and sometimes a specific ability stat (skill level for Bolt of Fire). (Some games leave some of those out of the bonus, or have a lower bonus, for example, A:EFTP has only a 1% hit bonus for most category stats.)

 

Annoyingly, SW insists on having the in-game item info boxes display a derived (and not very informative) number, the "Base Damage", which is really just the DIE MULTIPLIER multiplied by the item's BASE BONUS (and, in some games, plus a static damage bonus that may come from the item/spell or from the ability routine itself). In some more recent games like Avadon, this also incorporates SUPPLEMENTAL BONUS. It would be a lot more informative and useful if the info box simply displayed the BASE BONUS itself. However, if you can figure out either the die multiplier (usually trivial to do) or the static damage bonus, you can work out the base bonus without too much trouble. You can also just look in the item/ability defs file for it.

 

The Oozing Blade also has a listed +5 to hit. But given the above info, it will actually be 5% less accurate than the shaped blade, given that it has two less damage dice.

Yup. Note that the "+5% to hit" bonus does one thing that a higher base bonus does not do: it actually counteracts the encumbering effect of equipment with a hit penalty, for games where that is tracked separately (i.e., for mage spellcasting in the Avernums).

 

This info also calls into question the value in general of weapons that have few damage dice in exchange for bonuses to stats. Is it worth having two more parry and quick action if your sword also has a 10, 20 or even 30 percent accuracy deficit compared to the blander but harder hitting sword?

Yes, but with a caveat: in every SW game besides AEFTP, your accuracy will go way past the relevant cap early in the game. In a few games that won't happen until later in the game if you're on Torment. But really, if you put points in the stats you should be investing in anyway, hitting stuff is trivial.

 

You're right though that stat boosts are not always worth a lower damage weapon; it really depends.

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Some very short test in G4, luck does affect turn order there. Might be around 2 Luck giving the same improvement as 1 Dex. At that value I don't see why a shaper (or anyone really) would want to invest significantly into luck.

 

This is certainly an important consideration as to what weapon to chose for your PC. As a direct example, in G4 the Oozing Blade is 12-60 damage and the Shaped Blade 14-70. The Oozing Blade also has a listed +5 to hit. But given the above info, it will actually be 5% less accurate than the shaped blade, given that it has two less damage dice
Bad example. Oozing Blade wins hands down because the 5% accuracy doesn't matter in G4 and it drips acid which more than makes up for the 2 less damage dice. You should look at G1-3, that's where accuracy was really needed to hit stuff, G2 was especially bad.
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You should look at G1-3, that's where accuracy was really needed to hit stuff, G2 was especially bad.

I don't want to discount your experience, but this is not really characteristic of those games. G1-3 actually had as simple an accuracy system as any SW games. Putting even a moderate number of points into attack-relevant stats would easily keep your accuracy near or above the cap, as enemy evasion rates (from auto-calculated Dex) rose much more slowly than your level.

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Slarty, I'm not disputing that the accuracy system is the same in all Geneforges. And ofc I don't build jack of all trade builds on torment, I play highly focussed melee builds. Replaying G4 that way I never miss yet when I go for G2 I do miss quite a bit.

When was the last time you replayed those games ?

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Like I said, I'm not discounting your experience, it just doesn't seem to be a common one.

 

One difference between G4 and G2 is that G2 gives you a huge amount of flexibility in the order you visit areas; G4 does not. Thus, it's quite possible to run into accuracy problems if you visit higher-level areas early in G2. Also, in G1-3 the old encumbrance system makes it a lot easier to be encumbered (by pack weight), and to have your accuracy reduced in that way.

 

Also in G2, the common Parry/Quick Action Guardian build is going to have accuracy problems early on if you put all your points into Parry/QA as many people do. Not saying it's a bad strategy to do so, but the accuracy problems there come entirely from skill point choices; the mechanics aren't any different or any less generous.

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I suspect it has to be the openness of G2. Can't say that I ever fight encumbered, losing APs is just too bad in the old games, and I don't use parry either.

 

Maybe I'll play a bit of G2 later and pay attention where I miss.

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