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Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 2:43 am
by k0r3l1k

Howdy Everyone!

I'm working on designing some new-ish combat mechanics, or more specifically trying to refine some previous ideas I've used in other projects.

I could really use some solid feedback and additional thoughts on the design so please let me know what you think. I will be including a poll to get a general idea of your thoughts on the topic. I do want to warn that this will be a pretty long read, but please bare with me as I really do need some solid feedback before I proceed with the design.

Read below for more details!

The combat mechanics in question are the Character's damage and defense stats and how they relate to one another. The main goal of this system is to simplify and clarify the combat and what your character is capable of. In other words I'm trying to minimize the L in LCS.
Here's the specifics:
This is the most basic source of damage for the player. It can be increased by equipping weapons and various other items. Damage simply gives a flat bonus to the total potential damage the player can do. Each class skill will take advantage of this total in its own distinct way based on the type of skill, the area it affects and the rate it which it does damage.
...adds a static value to the total "damage pool" the player's skills will use. primarily determined by weapon.
...can be obtained on other types of equipment.

This stat will act as a modifier to your Damage pool, increasing your total damage by 1% per point, relative to your prior damage amount. This means that potency's damage bonus will be exponential instead of linear. Potency is less common than damage, and in order to optimize your damage output you may have to sacrifice other desirable stats on equipment.
...multiplies your total damage pool that your skill's damage is based on.
...increases on an exponential scale such that Bonus% = 1.01 ^ P.
...much less common on equipment and will provide challenging gear choices.
These two stats will make up almost all of a player's baseline damage, and all skills will deal damage based on these values. The character sheet will display their individual bonuses as well as the sum total of the two.

It is worth noting that damage boosts such as "strength" and "dexterity" are being eliminated entirely, and traditional weapon damage won't exist except in the form of the "Damage" stat detailed above, though each weapon will still have a unique range of damage values and attack speeds.

As previously noted, any and all feedback will be helpful. The above points are still an early design and I'm definitely looking for ways to expand the system and make the available damage bonuses more interesting and diverse.

Thank you,

Re: Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 1:18 pm
by Desocupado
It's a bit (totally) D3-ish.

Damage seems a variable flat modifier while potency isn't.
You should probably plot graphics with each function derivate with a few numbers for skill damage (base)

Re: Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 3:55 pm
by k0r3l1k
Ok. I definitely see your point but A; is a similarity to diablo 3 that a bad thing and B; what could I add or change to reduce any problem with the system?

Also, I have graphed the damage scale and I think it works well in both small and large amounts.

The biggest difference is that Potency will be just as effective per point going from 28 to 29 as it is from 312 to 313.
(132% to 133% and 2229% to 2252%) respectively.

Diablo 3 functions mainly on main stat as a damage boost, but there won't be any main stat in this system and bonuses won't be getting up into the 10,000's range. Potency will probably hover around 200 for top level characters while Damge will probably top out around 600 to 900 depending on item qualities of course.

Re: Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 5:01 pm
by Desocupado
Not necessarily bad I suppose. There are however a few things that will prove hard to balance:
Attack speed versus cast speed (and mana)
spammable versus cooldown based skills

I find Potency is a bit unnecessary tough. i.e. let's assume you start at 100 damage then get a +200 flat at level 100. We would have something akin to:
lvl 1 = 100
lvl 25 = 150
lvl 50 = 200
lvl 75 = 250
level 100 = 300

If we get +200% along the way (let's put it +2% per level)
lvl 1 = 102
lvl 25 = 225
lvl 50 = 400
lvl 75 = 625
level 100 = 900

-Gameplaywise you can balance lvl 100 enemies for either 300 damage or 900.

I would recommend looking at potency as a glass canon feature that is always fixed and costly to wear - let's say one source topping at +50% or several sources (2-5) with +20% each.

Re: Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Tue May 03, 2016 5:42 pm
by k0r3l1k
What if I were to instead make three stats aside from flat damage, which would counterbalance each other like a 3 way scale.


Potency - increases damage by X% and mana cost by 1/2X%.

Haste - increases attack / cast speed by X% but mana cost increased by 1/2X%

Efficiency - reduces mana costs by X%

This way players could pump up their damage but they'd have to find a solution to the mana cost issues, by either balancing out the 3 stats or picking and choosing which are most beneficial.

Side note that potions will be redesigned or removed entirely.

Re: Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Thu May 05, 2016 12:41 pm
by Desocupado
Well let's see:

Potency is good for CD based skills and against fixed damage kickback (flat damage thorns)
Haste is good for frenzy and assassin and druid's charge skills. And control skills like stun and smite. And ofc to capitalize flat damage modifiers not affected by potency (let's say holy fire melee damage is like that)
Efficiency is probably best for control skills (glacial spike comes to mind, as does summons and curses)

Since each point in potency increase haste efficiency (and vice-versa) the maximum damage build is the assassin (50/50), whose mana don't last but so won't the enemies. (overpowerd with just any low mana cost build)
The other extreme is the zero cost build - maximum efficiency - spamming big spells (AoE and crowd control) - basically D&D 4th edition wizard - bad at single target dps (unless that character has a would have an expensive high damage single target spell) - then he's a master of everything.

Consider this - the stat system is just a numerical "skill tree" - unlike the actual skill tree it has way too many of possible spreads/builds.
I would recommend making the starting point worth something (Let's say you start with 200 points and earn just 100 while leveling levels)
Another way would be having having maximum stat values like D1.

All in all stats create lots moving parts on the characters to balance with much gameplay depth.

Re: Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Thu May 05, 2016 4:07 pm
by k0r3l1k
Good insight.

I do believe you are misunderstanding the design. These are stats that come from equipment , not stat points per level.

Even so I appreciate what you've shared and it definitely helps me reevaluate the design.

Re: Feedback Needed -- Ideas for Damage Mechanics

Posted: Thu May 05, 2016 11:17 pm
by Desocupado
True, after my first post I ignored that part on not being Str or Dex replacements.
On the other way it's a bit more like D3.

Keep in mind that a "reduces mana costs by X%" is equivalent to a +% mana pool (since it also increase regen) - you probably don't need to code a new property to achieve that effect.
If you make only one of either Potency, Haste or Efficiency "mod" spawn on the item they are effectively having a negative synergy with each other.

A good thing to balance % dmg x speed is making enemies with flat damage reduction and flat bonuses on hit (like gain 10 life/mana on hit - not based on Damage)