Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Feedback, bugs, and general gameplay related discussion.
Jegzed
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Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Postby Jegzed » Tue Feb 01, 2005 8:15 am

We've fought a few dragons now with the new code, and there are some interesting conclusions at least I have drawn from it.

The main problem with major dragonfights is that it relies too much on luck compared to the skill of the group.
What basically happens in a dragon fight is now this.
1) Spellup
2) Charge
3) Spam as much damage on the dragon as possible, while spamming heals on group in a hope that the dragon does not get enough damage-procs in before its dead.

There is no strategy and no tactics involved, just pure brute force.

So what to do?

Lets start with considering each "attack/proc" a dragon has, and make sure that there is a way for a knowledgable player to reduce the

Roar
One of the most fun aspects of a dragonfight, and what can truly seperate a good group from a bad group.

Dragonbreath
The classic. Its possible to reduce this with prots and saves. What would be fun would be if there were two versions of it. One as now that takes on entire group, and one that focuses the breath on 3-5 people closest to it or something.

Dragonbite
Currently there is no known counter or tactic for this. A simple solution would be to not to have it proc unless the same person have tanked for more than 3 rounds. That would involve tactics. Do we want the tank to get bitten hard, or do we want to get roared out?

Claws
I love how this works.. It makes people have to focus on helping a hurt person ahead of just spamming damage/gheals.

Wingbuffet & Tailsweep & Stomp
I love these attacks. The problem is that they usually comes too often together with everything else that simply spanks everything in sight. If there was ways to counter those or slightly reducing its effect, not by a spellup, but by doing things in combat, that would RULE.
Like, if you are reclined, you'd not get bashed by a tailsweep or something.
/Jegzed - Sorcere Master - Crimson Coalition
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Re: Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Postby teflor the ranger » Tue Feb 01, 2005 8:55 am

Jegzed wrote:1) Spellup
2) Charge
3) Spam as much damage on the dragon as possible, while spamming heals on group in a hope that the dragon does not get enough damage-procs in before its dead.


Sounds a bit familiar.
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Re: Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Postby Llaaldara » Wed Feb 02, 2005 5:48 pm

Questions for the Shevmint..

Roar
Is there any spell or song in the game that gives bonuses to save against Dragon Fear?

Dragonbreath
Is this limited at all by total number of targets able to be hit with it?

Dragonbite
Can this be done to people not currently engaged with the dragon?

Wingbuffet
Is it possible to save against this in some way? Are there any abilities currently in the game that allow players to be more.. cemented.. to the ground? (Sounds like a terrific idea for elementalists if not, some form of Earth Bonding/Graft)

Tailsweep & Stomp
Are these based only on dodge to prevent?
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Re: Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Postby Pril » Wed Feb 02, 2005 5:55 pm

Llaaldara wrote:Questions for the Shevmint..

Dragonbite
Can this be done to people not currently engaged with the dragon?


Let's be realistic Llaaldara how often are you in a dragon fight and not engaged between buffet and breath? :p
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Re: Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Postby Llaaldara » Wed Feb 02, 2005 6:40 pm

Pril wrote:
Llaaldara wrote:Questions for the Shevmint..

Dragonbite
Can this be done to people not currently engaged with the dragon?


Let's be realistic Llaaldara how often are you in a dragon fight and not engaged between buffet and breath? :p


I am being realistic. It depends on the dragon I'm fighting to be honest, Pril. Some dragons in particular I'm almost never engaged with. I'm doing one spell and out runs on, beating the dragon down as he heals his buddies, or self, while the group is still rallying or doing spell-ups.

*shrug*

Others I'm not. It's a fair question.
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Postby Pril » Wed Feb 02, 2005 6:49 pm

True Llaaldara i didn't think of the fights with nuke runs was just thinking about straight up fights. Good point. I'll shut up now :p
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Re: Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Postby Ashiwi » Wed Feb 02, 2005 7:17 pm

Pril wrote:Let's be realistic Llaaldara how often are you in a dragon fight and not engaged between buffet and breath? :p


Realistic? I can't think of the last time a dragon swooped down I-35 and landed on my car while I was on my way to work, but it's been a while.
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Re: Dragonslaying - A gameplay Analysis

Postby teflor the ranger » Wed Feb 02, 2005 7:25 pm

Ashiwi wrote:
Pril wrote:Let's be realistic Llaaldara how often are you in a dragon fight and not engaged between buffet and breath? :p


Realistic? I can't think of the last time a dragon swooped down I-35 and landed on my car while I was on my way to work, but it's been a while.


It was so scary iwi!
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Postby Shevarash » Wed Feb 02, 2005 7:30 pm

Without getting into too much detail, I will say this:

EVERY negative affect outside of the pure damage incurred by every kind of dragon attack has a save associated with it to reduce or negate the penalty.

For instance, yes, you can save against Wing Buffet to avoid being knocked over or stunned. You can save against the roar. You can save against falling down from a tail slap. These saves are all based on different things and have a varying difficulty level to save against - those details are up to you to figure out.

To answer a couple of the other questions -

No, there is no targetting limit on dragonbreath.

Yes, Dragons can perform special attacks on players not currently engaged with them - providing that the dragon is aggressive to them. Just because you're not attempting to slap it doesn't mean its unaware of your presense and your threat.

One other thing that bears explaining:

These dragon attacks are not Procs and they have nothing to do with normal combat attacks. The attacks are not just a jumble of procs tossed on dragons with arbitrary frequencies - they are run by a detailed engine that controls the frequency and power based on level of the dragon and other factors.

I hope this answers some of your questions, and thank you for the constructive feedback in this thread.
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Postby Llaaldara » Wed Feb 02, 2005 7:45 pm

Cool, thanks for the info Shevmint :)

Shevarash wrote:No, there is no targetting limit on dragonbreath.


Would you consider possibly adding this, specifically to certain types of dragon breath? Some dragon breaths are a cone that can be swept from side to side to hit multiple opponents, true, but I've never heard of one that does a 360 when breathing. Also, some dragon breaths aren't a cone, they are a straight line, for instance, blue dragon's lightning breath.

Would you consider perhaps editing each type of breath attack to distinguish between the 3 main types of breath projectile: cloud, cone, stream
and giving each of these types of breath different limitations?

Perhaps in fairness, the different types could lead to different amounts of damage. So dragons who hit more people, do ultimately less damage then the overall. Stream would do greatest, with least targets. Cone would hit more targets for less damage. And cloud would hit most targets for least damage.

This would allow a lot of 'mixing it up' for areas writers, and therefor allow fights to be even more dynamic when engaged with multiple dragon types, ala Tiamat.
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Postby Dlur » Wed Feb 02, 2005 8:39 pm

Llaaldara wrote:Cool, thanks for the info Shevmint :)

Shevarash wrote:No, there is no targetting limit on dragonbreath.


Would you consider possibly adding this, specifically to certain types of dragon breath? Some dragon breaths are a cone that can be swept from side to side to hit multiple opponents, true, but I've never heard of one that does a 360 when breathing. Also, some dragon breaths aren't a cone, they are a straight line, for instance, blue dragon's lightning breath.

Would you consider perhaps editing each type of breath attack to distinguish between the 3 main types of breath projectile: cloud, cone, stream
and giving each of these types of breath different limitations?

Perhaps in fairness, the different types could lead to different amounts of damage. So dragons who hit more people, do ultimately less damage then the overall. Stream would do greatest, with least targets. Cone would hit more targets for less damage. And cloud would hit most targets for least damage.

This would allow a lot of 'mixing it up' for areas writers, and therefor allow fights to be even more dynamic when engaged with multiple dragon types, ala Tiamat.


This actually makes good sense as long as it comes with a dynamic targetting system so that for example it's not always the cleric that gets hit with the lightning bolt from the blue dragon. The dragon should target whoever is the biggest threat to the dragn at that moment...
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Postby Imis9 » Wed Feb 02, 2005 8:47 pm

Let's not smite all the clerics. :P
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Postby Dlur » Wed Feb 02, 2005 10:00 pm

Imis9 wrote:Let's not smite all the clerics. :P


Heh I just remeber that there are certain targetting systems in the MUD that seem to always target the cleric for whatever reason. I think mainly it was mob switching or something, not sure if that's been fixed or not as it's been a while since I've played.
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Postby Shevarash » Thu Feb 03, 2005 12:42 am

Dragons already have their own dynamic targetting system - not for melee, but for their special abilities. :)
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Postby Dlur » Thu Feb 03, 2005 2:07 am

Shevarash wrote:Dragons already have their own dynamic targetting system - not for melee, but for their special abilities. :)


Not trying to knock ya, and yeah I know I don't play much anymore so I don't have first hand experience, but from the logs I've read that have been posted in the last week it's still the same old-same-old with the area effect dragon attacks. The constructive critisism I'm trying to offer is this:

1) The claw and bite attacks look fine and dynamic enough as far as targetting goes, although I liked that idea I saw somewhere about it targetting any tank that had tanked for more than X amount of rounds. If you have to switch tanks you'll induce roaring, which can be actually the most deadly of dragon attacks in some zones. If you don't rescue the tank you'll risk your tank getting clawed or bitten for oodles of damage, possibly at a very inoportune time. This introduces an element of strategy.

2) Make 3 types of breath weapons as Llaaldara suggested: stream, cone, and cloud. Different dragon races have different breath weapons, and different breath weapons have different areas of effect.
-Stream: Let's say a stream can only hit 1-2 players in a room, but does 100X damage if X were our baseline value. The stream would be chosen by the targetting system to see which player is the biggest threat to the dragon and attempt to off that player first. That player would still get a save_vs_breath at a slightly better chance since it's a little easier to dodge a very small diameter stream than it is to dodge a cone or a cloud.
-Cone: A cone could hit from 1-8 players in a room depending on the room size and the level of the dragon, but mainly focusing on hitting at least 4 people. A cone would do say 75X damage and would have a standard sv_breath check. Not sure exactly how to target just a group of players, but sounds like you have a dynamic targetting routine done up already that is used for the jump procedure portion of the dragon routine. It should work similar to that and it should work on anyone in the room, not just group members of course.
-Cloud: A cloud of breath, such as poison gas from a green dragon, should be able to hit pretty much everyone in the room. Let's say from 1-20 people, but usually almost always hitting nearly everyone in the room. The cloud would do say 50X damage and wouldn't really need dynamic targetting.

3) Dragon pounce(for lack of a better name): This seems to be working perfectly to me from the logs I've read, but if it isn't already modified it should be easier for someone that is fast and agile to get out of the way (and thus save) than it would be for say a lumbering ogre. This was a real great idea and since it only targets a portion of the group there's no definitive player strategy item needed to counter it.

4) Wing Buffett: This is a really sound idea in terms of adding a portion of realism to the dragon combat routine, but it's absolutely terrible in terms of player strategy. This single item is what makes any dragon fight a simple matter of luck and not skill. To counter this I would say that wing buffett should only happen maybe 1-3 times per dragon fight, depending on the length of the fight. Also it should be a little more targetting, striking say 5-8 members of a 15 person group at most. Also a wing buffett should pre-lag the dragon so that all they can do is their standard combat actions with no other actions for 1 round before they wing buffett, and 1 round of only combat actions(with no special dragon routines) after the wing buffett. If it was done this way then I'd say keep the buffett effect at similar or slightly higher damage level. Keep the bash lag about the same, and give it a chance to knock 1-2 of the players that get affected by wingbuffett clear out of the room into an adjacent room, thus giving another possibility of spankage.

Again, this is just an attempt at constructive critisism from an old player and nothing more. If you're going to make dragon fights difficult (as they should be) at least make them fun again and not so much a matter of luck, but perhaps more of a factor of skill. This is not to say luck shouldn't factor into it, but skill should as well.
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Postby Llaaldara » Thu Feb 03, 2005 2:51 am

PS. I'd like to see Elemental embodiement give a high chance to shrug dragon wing buffet.
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Postby Dlur » Thu Feb 03, 2005 3:45 am

Llaaldara wrote:PS. I'd like to see Elemental embodiement give a high chance to shrug dragon wing buffet.


Depends on how you look at it I guess. A heavier, more solid creature (aka ogre, or someone with earth/water embody) wouldn't be so easily tossed around, but if they did get hurled around might take more damage. Someone that is nearly immaterial (aka fire or air embody) might not take as much damage from the buffetting winds, but might have a better chance of being thrown (in this case blown) out of the fight room into an adjacent room.

Actually munchkin races such as halflings, gnomes, elves, drow, squids and those that are immaterial should get thrown around by wingbuffet more easily than those that are hefty (ogres, barbarians, dwarfs/duergar(short, but stout), trolls, etc). That could be another way to increase the level of strategy against wingbuffet by bringing a lot of heavier players (ie the dumb races) that aren't going to be as good of nukers or damage dealers since they aren't as smart.
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Postby vallis » Fri Feb 04, 2005 9:52 pm

Wouldn't fly negate a tail sweep?

Of course, if flying, wouldn't a wing buffet slam you against a wall, or perhaps another player?

It'd be neat if when a buffet hit, you have a chance of slamming into another PC and launching them out of the room.
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Postby Botef » Fri Feb 04, 2005 10:06 pm

vallis wrote:It'd be neat if when a buffet hit, you have a chance of slamming into another PC and launching them out of the room.


Player X, corner pocket.
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Postby Dlur » Sat Feb 05, 2005 1:31 am

vallis wrote:Wouldn't fly negate a tail sweep?

Of course, if flying, wouldn't a wing buffet slam you against a wall, or perhaps another player?

It'd be neat if when a buffet hit, you have a chance of slamming into another PC and launching them out of the room.


If you're engaged to the dragon in combat then you're close enough to the dragon to be hit with its tail if you are flying or not. I'd say if you're flying and not engaged to the dragon in actual combat rounds (ie a caster that disengages after a dragon breath) you'd have a different chance of being hit by tailsweep, but not no chance at all.

Same thing with wing buffet when flying, you might be right next to the dragon, directly in front of it, or you might be the sneaky rogue that's flying up behind it to try and stab it underneath one of its neck scales. Or you could be that sneaky drow mage levitating up in the corner of the cavern, calmly and quietly throwing force missiles down on the dragon.
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Postby Llaaldara » Sat Feb 05, 2005 5:12 pm

Dlur wrote:
Llaaldara wrote:PS. I'd like to see Elemental embodiement give a high chance to shrug dragon wing buffet.


Depends on how you look at it I guess. A heavier, more solid creature (aka ogre, or someone with earth/water embody) wouldn't be so easily tossed around, but if they did get hurled around might take more damage. Someone that is nearly immaterial (aka fire or air embody) might not take as much damage from the buffetting winds, but might have a better chance of being thrown (in this case blown) out of the fight room into an adjacent room.

Actually munchkin races such as halflings, gnomes, elves, drow, squids and those that are immaterial should get thrown around by wingbuffet more easily than those that are hefty (ogres, barbarians, dwarfs/duergar(short, but stout), trolls, etc). That could be another way to increase the level of strategy against wingbuffet by bringing a lot of heavier players (ie the dumb races) that aren't going to be as good of nukers or damage dealers since they aren't as smart.


That's pretty much how I was looking at it too. :wink:

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