Changing damage types

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Dave
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Changing damage types

Post by Dave »

I think our damage type system works fairly well, but too many units are 'homogenous'. For instance, too many units have the same resistance to impact/blade/pierce, or have different resistances, but those resistances are not obvious, and apparently chosen arbitarily just to create variety, rather than for any logical reason.

The last thing I want to do with this proposal is make the game more complex. The aim is to keep the same level of complexity, or perhaps increase complexity by a very small amount, but make the game much more fun. In particular, I don't want to create a system where we start worrying about the difference between using a slashing long sword or a thrusting short sword such as a gladius.

I am proposing that we have the following damage types:

- Slashing (replaces blade, a better name might be needed): This damage type might actually become slightly expanded. It should now include most melee weapons. Anything that involves striking or stabbing at an enemy with a sharp or blunt weapon, and which doesn't fit in another category, should use this damage type.

Units that have armor or shields should have better resistance to this damage type.
Units that ride mounts will generally have slightly better resistance to this damage type
Skeletons and other undead units should have moderately good resistance to this damage type

- Impaling (replaces pierce used in melee contexts): This damage type is used for long melee weapons that are designed to impale an opponent. Weapons such as pikes, spears, and lances use this damage type. Shorter stabbing weapons such as daggers and short swords use 'Slashing' instead.

Units that ride mounts are very weak against this damage type.
Units that have armor or shields have better resistance to this damage type
Skeletons and other undead units have very good resistance to this damage type

- Crushing (replaces blunt): Units that rely on very high impact to inflict damage use this damage type. Usually a unit has to be larger than humanoid size to inflict this type of damage. For instance, a troll or wose. Humanoid units that use clubs now simply inflict slashing damage. It may be a unique feature of dwarves that they possess units with warhammers that can inflict crushing damage.

In general the criteria for possessing 'crushing' damage is that the force must be powerful enough that a defender possessing armor or shield will be at no advantage compared to an unarmored unit. Against a wooden club, armor is likely to be very effective. A Dwarven warhammer might be said though to be powerful enough so that a helmet -- along with the head inside it -- would be crushed by its blow.

Units that have armor or shields don't have better resistance to this damage type than units without armor or shields
Skeletons and other undead units have very poor resistance to this damage type.
Flying units have excellent resistance to this damage type
Large units (for instance, most units that themselves have a crushing attack) would have good resistance to this damage type

- Missile (replaces pierce/blade in ranged contexts): Units with bows use this damage type. Units with small ranged weapons such as darts and daggers may use this damage type, or they may use slashing.

Flying units have poor resistance to this damage type
Skeletons and other undead units have good resistance to this damage type
Mounted units are generally a little weak to this damage type, but not dreadfully so
Units that have armor have better resistance to this damage type. Units that have shields have significantly better resistance to this damage type.

For the moment, I propose fire, cold, and holy remain the way they are. They could be changed at a later time though.

I think this system would make things much more interesting. Horsemen could have a clear weakness to spears and pikes without us giving them awful resistance to bows. Units such as gryphons -- which currently have very boring resistance numbers -- could suddenly be much more interesting, powerful units who must be careful not to come in range of enemy bows.

Likewise, if a Wose is running amok trying to crush things underfoot, you are going to take serious damage whether or not you have armor on. Thus the best option will become being a unit with little or no armor such as a thief who can dodge the blow, while armored units will be vulnerable, as they will likely be hit, and will sustain much damage.

A few units, such as the thug, will become uninteresting under this proposal, since they will lose their distinctive attack. However I think this is far outweighed by the extra interest added elsewhere.

Of course, the proposal would require lots of rebalancing.

Thoughts?

David
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Ranger M
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Post by Ranger M »

What do you mean by the thug becoming uninteresting, it isn't the only unit with impact melee, and I don't get how this will affect it.

the crushing name, although it suits most units with crushing, doesn't make sense with the thugs club, or other units staffs, as they hit more than crush, but I would see no way around this except two different types, which would be pointless. (and wasn't it called impact before, and not bunt)
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Post by wayfarer »

I really like it.
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Post by zookeeper »

The changes to impact are the only thing that I don't like. Thugs, shamans, corpses, etc. would all (presumably, not sure about shaman) get the slashing damage type, which I think would be a bit too bland. I see the rationale behind the proposal, but I don't think that it'd be necessary in impact's case. There aren't that many units doing impact damage (mostly mages and others having pitiful impact melee), so I don't see why those few would need to change.

The missile damage type is good, especially if it was generally effective against flying units.

In general, I think it'd be good to homogenize resistances. So all "armoured" units would have the same slashing/piercing/crushing resistances, unless there really is something special about the unit to warrant a raise or a decrease. When some armoured units have 10%, some 20% and some 30% impact resistance, it's much harder to remember and just feels somewhat silly. Having those three "main" resistances be standard except when there's a good reason for a real exception (decreasing a "standard" resistance by 10% for balancing reasons isn't one) would probably be a good thing, especially when the missile damage type would introduce one more type to consider and remember. Seven damage types is quite a lot.
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Post by wayfarer »

Come on 7 damage types to remember Wesnoth is not a realtime strategy game. The screen doesn't explode every 2 minutes I guess you can take the time to look into the unit describtion though the damage types would now be more logical and could be better indicated by the graphics.
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Post by Elvish_Pillager »

Hmm. Interesting proposal.

(potentially) better name for Slashing: Striking

As to fire, cold, and holy - the current system seems quite arbitrary and unbalanced, and 'holy' is just weird; what I'd like to see is more like this:

Fire: This would represent fire. Normal fire. Units that resist it more would be ones with thick skin (e.g. trolls, ogres, drakes) and with thorough armor, like Heavy Infantry; Shooting flames break on a sheet of metal, as opposed to now, where they make you take more damage. Skeletons don't even have flammable flesh, so they would resist this damage type more; however, other units, like Ghouls and Corpses and Saurians are vulnerable.

Cold: Cold is a whole different kind of an attack from fire. You don't throw a cold ball at someone; you drain heat from them and the air around them. You freeze their skin with your icy touch. Undead wouldn't be vulnerable because they don't need warmth to 'live', but besides them, all units would be pretty equal in vulnerability. Armor does nothing against cold.

Energy: Raw magical energy smiting the enemy. The Mage -> White Mage path would use this damage type. Skeletons and other undead would be moderately weak to this damage type, since it effectively attacks the magic that holds them together. Few units would have resistance to this damage type (with the notable exception of high level mages.)
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Post by Ranger M »

yeah, but holy is specifically good against undead, which cannot be said of the new, energy attack.

also in relation to armour against fire, being boiled alive in armor which conducts heat would kill you, especially as the newly heated armor would continue to burn you after the fire went out. you would be boiled alive.
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Post by Dave »

I have ideas for holy/fire/cold however I don't want to complicate issues in this thread by discussing them now. I think we can change them later and independently. If you want to discuss holy/fire/cold, please open a new thread to do so.

David
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Post by toms »

I can´t help me, but I have the little suspection that the game is getting copied more and more
from others...I don´t know why I have these thoughts, but...you know :?

Otherwise, an interesting idea :)
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Post by Darth Fool »

I generally like the idea although I would change the 'ing' forms of attack names: slashing -> slash. impaling -> impale. crushing -> crush. Otherwise we should change fire to igniting, cold to freezing, and holy to holying? I like the idea that generally all human sized 1 handed weapons do slash damage. human sized two handed weapons would either impale(spears) or crush(staves, war hammers). As for EP's fire, cold and energy proposal, that seems quite reasonable to me.
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Post by toms »

Uuuuuh, what kind of damage do battle axes? :roll:
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Post by Dave »

@DarthFool: Yeah I agree with the adjusted naming

@toms: battle axes do 'blade' damage at the moment. They would do 'slash' damage under the new scheme.

David
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Post by Noyga »

What i don't like is that the new 'slashing' damage type is probably too much generic.
Clubs and sword would be 'slashing weapon' so there would be no longuer difference versus some units like skeletons or woses

I had another idea, probably a litlle complicated, but not very hard to understand :
Instead of couple of damage type/resistance we would have two : one for the kind of attack, one for the kind of damage.

For damage type resistance we typicaly have something like that:
- slash (swords, axes, ect...) : good versus woses and unarmored troops
- pierce (dagers, rapiers, lances, ect..) : better versus armored troops but not versus skellies
- impact (clubs, morningstar, crush, ect..) : good versus skelies
- fire
- cold
- energy (ie Holy)

Then we would have another resistance depending to the attack type :
- normal damage (need a better name) : most melee weapon would use this
- heavy damage (for strong creatures) : this would be exactly like 'crush', the armors would be more or less uselsess versus this kind of damage
- impale (mostly spears, polarms, ect..) : mounted units would be vulnerable to this
- missile : for projectiles : flying unit would be vulnerable to this
- magical : for a few other cases

Then a few examples :
- a bow would make missile, pierce damages
- a sling would make missile, impact damages
- a spear would make impale, pierce damages
- a wose would make heavy, impact damages
- a knight charging with his lance would make heavy, pierce or impale, pierce damages
- a drake fire breath would make missile, fire damages
... ect ..

The two resistance would be added.
Effective_Damages = Base_Damages * (attack_type_resistance+damage_type_resistance)
Where the resistance are like in curent WML code, ie a total of 200 means twice de damages and 50 half the damages
Not sure we need all the types of attacks/damage i have listed.

By the way, I would be fine with Dave's system with current 'impact' as additionnal damage type.
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Post by Becephalus »

Its funny one of the very first posts I ever made here was more or less right along these lines and I was told the game already included all this (which I could see it didn't).

I really like these suggestions and making resistances more interesting to increase the rock/paper/scissors aspect (although not too much). I always am a big fan of making units with armor and shields (spearman anyone?) have different resistances for robe wearing mages for example (etc.).
Last edited by Becephalus on January 19th, 2006, 8:57 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Post by Elvish_Pillager »

IMO, the important thing is - if there's a "Generic" damage type, that actually makes it a different damage type, instead of being limited to Rock, Paper, and Scissors, which are all the same.
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