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View Full Version : General Balancing: Killing too easy, Surviving too tough


Baki
02-21-2011, 02:11 AM
hello,

i have the feeling something gets terrible wrong with advancing in the game. And the higher my own level and the monster level become the worse it gets.

All my chars have the same problem: they can easily kill everything within seconds. Melee chars rarely require more than 1 hit for a normal monster 5 or 10 levels higher than my own but its the same way for the monsters: 3 crits or a trap and a few normal hits and my char dies. Not to mention those Major Spike bosses who will reflect my own melee damage.

My melee char is currently level 50 and has spent most of his points into fire shield. fire shield buffs fire resistance. i have 210 fire resistance now. The other resistances are around 20-50. Now you would guess that a huge amount of fire resistance makes you nearly immune vs fire dmg.. but with 210 fr my reduction is only around 38%. How am i supposed to get the other resistances to 38%? Thats just impossible. Not that 38% is a lot..

For armor the things look a bit better, but only on paper. i've +65% armor from skills and tried to get a good balance between armor and other bonusses for my euipment. the result at 1250 armor is currently a protection of 48%. 48% looks okay too me in comparsion to my resistances but the physical damage of the monsters is also a lot higher than the dmg of elemental ranged monsters. I guess if i would focus completly on armor i could manage to my armor to 2000 maybe even 2500. That would bring the resuction from 48% to 55 or 60% but i would sacrifice a lot of HP for that so that would probably not give me any better burst dmg survivability which i obviously need.

I think something has to be done there. Give armor and especially resistance a better absorption or lower the damage of the monsters.

And buffing the HP or armor / resistances of the monsters would probably also be great.

alstein
02-21-2011, 02:41 AM
I think what would help is increasing the armor effectiveness of chain/plate character. Cloth/Leather armor guys should be glass cannons.

Plate especially should make you very tough.

It does seem like defense and armor is pretty meaningless in comparison to just slowing monster attacks, which is kinda whack/imbalanced.

You'd probably have to adjust healing/other similar powers if you make this adjustment though.

Bluddy
02-21-2011, 03:59 AM
Aaargh more imbalance! Seriously, balancing this game is ridiculously hard.

I think what we need is a repository of characters for testing. If everyone posts a character save at set intervals, we'll be able to play around with them and locate balance issues faster. I think I'll start a thread for that.

Bluddy
02-21-2011, 07:51 AM
OK checking my resistance charts (which may not be fully updated but should at least be close) fire shield, and therefore StatusEffectShieldOfFire but also StatusEffectProtectionFire, seems inadequate. It gives only 10 points of fire resistance. Given the current formula, that moves me for example from 42.7% to 43.2% at the next level, and sometimes resistance % still decreases at the next level! (we have to remember that a level up for the player usually means he's gone up even more levels in terms of monsters). In order to maintain roughly the same level of resistance, I'd have to keep investing just in fire shield!

Seems like it needs some tweaking.

Bluddy
02-21-2011, 08:33 AM
hello,

i have the feeling something gets terrible wrong with advancing in the game. And the higher my own level and the monster level become the worse it gets.

All my chars have the same problem: they can easily kill everything within seconds. Melee chars rarely require more than 1 hit for a normal monster 5 or 10 levels higher than my own but its the same way for the monsters: 3 crits or a trap and a few normal hits and my char dies. Not to mention those Major Spike bosses who will reflect my own melee damage.

My melee char is currently level 50 and has spent most of his points into fire shield. fire shield buffs fire resistance. i have 210 fire resistance now. The other resistances are around 20-50. Now you would guess that a huge amount of fire resistance makes you nearly immune vs fire dmg.. but with 210 fr my reduction is only around 38%. How am i supposed to get the other resistances to 38%? Thats just impossible. Not that 38% is a lot..

For armor the things look a bit better, but only on paper. i've +65% armor from skills and tried to get a good balance between armor and other bonusses for my euipment. the result at 1250 armor is currently a protection of 48%. 48% looks okay too me in comparsion to my resistances but the physical damage of the monsters is also a lot higher than the dmg of elemental ranged monsters. I guess if i would focus completly on armor i could manage to my armor to 2000 maybe even 2500. That would bring the resuction from 48% to 55 or 60% but i would sacrifice a lot of HP for that so that would probably not give me any better burst dmg survivability which i obviously need.

I think something has to be done there. Give armor and especially resistance a better absorption or lower the damage of the monsters.

And buffing the HP or armor / resistances of the monsters would probably also be great.

Could you give some more specifics? How much are the monsters hitting you for on average? What are your char's stats (strength, vitality etc)? How much are you hitting them for? What's their average HP?

From my very rough calculations, it seems like the ratio of monster damage to your HP should stay similar to the way it was before if you invest in vitality once in a while. Is it possible that the problem is that the monsters get more critical hits than they used to?

Also: are you using the latest patch? Armor absorptions were changed somewhat.

Nim
02-21-2011, 01:43 PM
Melee chars rarely require more than 1 hit for a normal monster 5 or 10 levels higher than my own
I'm assuming you are twinking your chars with better equipment ? Because I am playing at even levels due to HC and I don't one-hit every normal monster. Probably 50% one-hits or so ?
but its the same way for the monsters: 3 crits or a trap and a few normal hits and my char dies. 3 crits from a monster 5-10 levels killing you is bad why ?

Anyway, I agree with the general sentiment that melee chars have a really tough time surviving, but that's mostly due to elites and bosses in my experience. Case in point: Yesterday at lvl 42 I had to face a same lvl Defender boss with no scary modifiers. Before he died he hit me for 721 damage + 5 secs of 288 dam/sec deep wounds. That's 2,2k damage over 5 secs at lvl 42 where I had around 1100 hit points ( with a Vit potion). I got lucky in that I managed to pause and could look at why I was draining hps so fast even after throwing in a pot. Had 222 hps left with 3 secs deep wounds to go and couldn't use another pot for a few seconds more. That damage is just insane and usually I would have been simply dead and wondered wtf hit me ( thanks to pause abandoned the town). Oh well, just anecdotal evidence :)

alstein
02-21-2011, 02:25 PM
The real issue to me is that heavy armor and armor skills aren't worth enough.

I think defense is worth it, the demonogist armor skill that reduces crit/crushers is really worth it, as those are the things most likely to kill you.

The holy/magic shields tend to die in one hit also at higher levels unless you put a ton of points into them.

Bak
02-21-2011, 02:48 PM
Anyway, I agree with the general sentiment that melee chars have a really tough time surviving, but that's mostly due to elites and bosses in my experience. Case in point: Yesterday at lvl 42 I had to face a same lvl Defender boss with no scary modifiers. Before he died he hit me for 721 damage + 5 secs of 288 dam/sec deep wounds. That's 2,2k damage over 5 secs at lvl 42 where I had around 1100 hit points ( with a Vit potion). I got lucky in that I managed to pause and could look at why I was draining hps so fast even after throwing in a pot. Had 222 hps left with 3 secs deep wounds to go and couldn't use another pot for a few seconds more. That damage is just insane and usually I would have been simply dead and wondered wtf hit me ( thanks to pause abandoned the town). Oh well, just anecdotal evidence :)

Yeah, that is the usual end for a lot of my hardcore characters. :p
Although I'm really starting to appreciate doing it to the boss monsters at high levels (stealth for criticals + shiruken for deep wounds + gate to town to sit safely while the boss monster dies).

Max_Powers
02-21-2011, 07:06 PM
I think what would help is increasing the armor effectiveness of chain/plate character. Cloth/Leather armor guys should be glass cannons.

Plate especially should make you very tough.

It does seem like defense and armor is pretty meaningless in comparison to just slowing monster attacks, which is kinda whack/imbalanced.



I have proposed this in the past, but was told that it was too much of a change and might mess the game up. However, it would fix many of the complaints we are having.

Simple: Plate armor would have a base rate of 5% chance of a crit. Mail has a 10% chance...and on down the line until you get to cloth which would have a really high % chance(those are just made up numbers). Makes sense. Is more realistic. Etc. Whatever.

The resistances are down right silly. I gave up on worrying about them a long time ago. Just buy ass loads of potions and food instead.


Oh, one more thing. I also don't believe that defense does all that it is supposed to either. I am so sick and tired of having characters with like 95% chance to hit and less than 20% chance to be hit and somehow it seems to be the other way around. Seems like an enemy rarely misses on his first shot. Maybe there is more to it. Seems like if I just stand there they miss, but if I am attacking or moving the 20% chance to be hit doesn't apply.

Bluddy
02-21-2011, 11:09 PM
I think of a few directions for balancing combat.

1. I'm not 100% sure about this one because I don't know the formula. Do critical hits/crushing attack/stunning attack depend on the enemy's level? They really need to be. Otherwise monsters late in the game will have unjustifiably high critical hits etc against you, which make their power unbalanced.
2. The resistance formula needs to peak out at the proper place. With the current formula, it seems to reach its peak at around 40%, which is too low. What's important to figure out is where's the realistic curve: what is the level of max resistance per level; what is the min resistance; what's realistic to expect someone to get with resistance-boosting skills and high spirit; and to tweak the resistance formula to be around that curve.
3. Resistance rewards from spells and such almost certainly need to get higher and higher per level to match the diminishing return found in the formula.
4. I think plate armor might be suffering from the same problem in the armor absorption formula: it only slightly increases your armor at a level where the diminishing return is such that a slight increase doesn't make much of a difference at all. Again, I think it's important to look at realistic armor levels for different classes at different levels and make that curve be useful.

Essentially, I think we're seeing the downsides of the new formulas for resistance and armor absorption: high level characters (meaning those with relatively high armor or resistance in the curves) suffer because they can't improve their resistance/armor enough to make any difference.

The solution, I think, must come from using real data to improve the curves. While monster damage seems easy enough to predict per level, it's really hard (at least for me) to figure out what kind of armor level different characters have at different levels, or how much damage each character can dish out. I'm hoping the character repository can help with that. So check in your characters to the repository guys!

Chumpy
02-22-2011, 12:52 AM
Leather armor feels fine, at least up to level 50. I'm playing in towns 8-10 levels above me, and I (depending on how much I level in the course of the dungeon) can usually take a few hits from a normal monster before needing to heal.

I'm an Archer/Fire Mage, though - if I was a melee character in leather armor I'd be in real trouble. Bosses usually one-shot me, but that's basically appropriate.

alstein
02-22-2011, 01:35 AM
I think that's the crux of the problem- there is too much diminishing return right now on many things in regards to level.

If anything the reverse should be happening.

Chumpy
02-22-2011, 04:54 AM
Well, I mean, if I end up in melee, I get murdered. If I have to deal with two enemies at once, I get murdered. When I first come to a new town, I spend a while just killing things near the stairs/gate, because if I stay in the dungeon for more than a few seconds, I get murdered.

I have pretty great leather armor, so I can take two normal hits from a normal overlevelled monster.

It sounds to me like the problem is mail and plate aren't that much better.

Maledictus
02-22-2011, 06:02 AM
I haven't seen this mentioned yet, but shouldn't there be a baseline when testing this stuff? Like, dungeon levels must be the same as the character, or always at +5 or something. Otherwise results and impressions get warped; one player basing findings on dungeon levels of char+10 and another on char+3.
Anyway, I'd expect things to be difficult if I select a dungeon that's level char+10. Wouldn't rebalancing that simply shift the problem to dungeon levels of char+15 ? And how will this affect end-game, where you can't increase dungeon levels past 100 anymore? I've always thought that the game should be balanced for fun factor and difficulty at dungeon level char+0; if you can't survive on char+10 you either aren't ready for that or the char setup is wrong.

Sorry if I simplify things too much here, but given the bewildering amount of variables in play here I sorta have to.

Sofar I've played mostly melee chars and yes, it can be tough, but part of the fun is trying to figure out ways to get the bastard that can kill you so easily. Use the scenery, use potions, farm items, switch stuff around through the shared stash, whatever. In the end I always get them.