Difficulty Settings

Discussion in 'General Modification' started by Gaear, Dec 4, 2009.

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  1. Gaear

    Gaear Bastard Maestro Administrator

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    We're considering implementing another feature in TFE-X that would allow users to control the 'difficulty' of ToEE via a front end menu setting.

    I say 'difficulty' because the only thing this setting would control is the XP percentage granted (relatively easy to do), not monster toughness, treasure, or anything else (not easy to do).

    Vanilla ToEE granted xp at a rate of 70% RAW. Based on a head-to-head comparison of vanilla and Co8 5.6.x, Sitra Achara has recommended an xp rate of 52% as balanced with our mods.

    We could have a variety of settings in the front end app, but:

    1. How many should there be, and what should they be?

    Example: 3 settings - easy, moderate, and hard​

    2. What percentages should the settings be?

    Example: easy (70%), moderate (52%), hard (34%)​
    Any and all sensible/informed suggestions are welcome.
     
  2. Sitra Achara

    Sitra Achara Senior Member

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    I propose something along these lines:

    Insane - 25%, max NPC HP
    Hard - 45%, max NPC HP
    Moderate - 60 %
    Easy - 75%
    Child's play - 100%, max PC HP

    This scheme:

    • Lets the player know exactly what these difficulty levels actually mean. (so they don't come off thinking the AI is harder, more monsters are spawned etc.)
    • Allows full customization.
    • Is better suited to future expansion (adding more buttons, module specific settings, etc.)


    As for why I chose those values:
    • Hard - players seeking 'hard mode' usually want a real challenge. 45% should make the early-mid game quite tough, mostly due to reduced XP, and the late game tougher too, mostly due to the max NPC HP (from HD).
      Could probably use some tweaking and testing, but I'd rather leave the fine-tuning to the players by allowing them to adjust the slider by themselves.
    • Moderate - not as reduced as I previously recommended (52%), because it might make the early game too hard.
    • Easy - even easier than vanilla. Some players do find the game hard.
    • Insane, Child's play - just to cover the extremes.
     

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    Last edited: Dec 4, 2009
  3. Mad Mardigan

    Mad Mardigan Member

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    Wow, excellent reply. I would like to be able to adjust the slider during the game. A linear xp rate may not scale smoothly. I find the early game harder and the mid to late game easier. It would also depend on char build types, point buy, etc. If you have mostly fighter builds, the early game would be easier.

    Mad Mardigan
     
  4. Boque

    Boque Member

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    I Like this idea too, I think i'll play insane with a group of point buy characters :S
     
  5. blackwind

    blackwind Established Member

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    I'd worship the ground you guys walk on if it's possible to make the game much tougher.
     
  6. GuardianAngel82

    GuardianAngel82 Senior Member

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    Try point buy, full HP for npc's. Or take the 1st roll on 4d6 instead of point buy.;)
     
  7. wizgeorge

    wizgeorge Prophet of Wizardy

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    MaxHP is great, tho somewhat of a cheat because the twister isn't very generous at levelup time.Take it out and the 10th level fighter might have 70-80hp instead of 130hp. Max from HD is okay for the monsters and the 70hp fighter vs a 150+hp GTB might be more of a challenge. A slider with easy, moderate and hard sounds okay. MedalofHonor and CallofDuty and theWitcher have those settings. Basically a good, sound idea.
     
  8. GuardianAngel82

    GuardianAngel82 Senior Member

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    How about the Icewind Dale "Heart of Fury" mode? :thumbsup:
     
  9. Salk

    Salk Established Member

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    I like it.

    I would personally play at moderate difficulty but with max HP for both PCs and NPCs. Would it be possible?
     
  10. Shiningted

    Shiningted I want my goat back Global Moderator

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    Sitra's idea is some presets, or set the slider / max HP yourself.
     
  11. Sitra Achara

    Sitra Achara Senior Member

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    Yeah, the idea is to create presets, which may be used as a basis for customization.
     
  12. taltamir

    taltamir Established Member

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    I really like the notion of a slider as in the example by Sitra Achara, with the "presets" should you choose to use them...

    an "average HP" option would also be lovely, having to chose between random and maxHP sucks for different reasons.

    And it will allow you to do more... you could play with 100% XP but lower starting stats. it would be interesting to finally play a character who doesn't have an 18 somewhere.
     
  13. Sitra Achara

    Sitra Achara Senior Member

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    I've written a script that calculates XP for a given game (sequence of fights and quests).
    The inputs are:

    • XP modifier (default is 0.7, as in vanilla)
    • party size (default is 6)
    The purpose of this script is to hasten balance testing, by getting a rough estimate of the party's XP and level as the game progresses, so you don't have to start a new game and go through it all when you want to test it.
    This may be used to quickly test the effect of:

    • The XP modifier
    • Party sizes
    • New content

    The 'game sequence' is currently written inside the script itself, and is unchangeable after you compile the file (but you can change it before running the script). I may alter it so it reads from a file in the future.
    NPCs' Challenge Ratings - likewise.


    You can run it from the ToEE console:
    Code:
    from txp import *
    xp_calc( [xp modifier], [party size] )
    #(inputs are optional, default values are 0.7, 6)
    
    The script's outputs are written to a file (balance_report.txt inside modules\ToEE).

    Example:

    Code:
    from txp import *
    xp_calc( 0.45 )
    
    will yield the following file:

    Code:
      XP modifier = 0.45
      Party Size = 6
    
    
    Phase 1:     Hommlet, part I
    Party Level: 1,         XP Total: 0
    After Hommlet easy quests                 : Party Level - 1, XP Total: 292.5
    After Deklo Grove                 : Party Level - 1, XP Total: 450.0
    After Hommlet - reveal traders quests                 : Party Level - 1, XP Total: 585.0
    After Hommlet part1 roundup                 : Party Level - 1, XP Total: 821.25
    Party Level: 1, XP Total: 821.25, XP Gained in phase: 821.25
    
    
    Phase 2:     Moathouse Courtyard
    Party Level: 1,         XP Total: 821.25
    After Moat giant frogs                 : Party Level - 1, XP Total: 933.75
    After Moat courtyard brigands                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1125.0
    After Moat spider tower                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1192.5
    Party Level: 2, XP Total: 1192.5, XP Gained in phase: 371.25
    
    
    Phase 3:     Moathouse Dungeon, Level I
    Party Level: 2,         XP Total: 1192.5
    After Moat huge viper                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1260.0
    After Moat stirges                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1305.0
    After Moat giant tick                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1350.0
    After Moat giant lizard                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1395.0
    After Moat brigand leader                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1642.5
    Party Level: 2, XP Total: 1642.5, XP Gained in phase: 450.0
    
    
    Phase 4:     Moathouse Dungeon, Level II
    Party Level: 2,         XP Total: 1642.5
    After Moat zombies and slimes                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1800.0
    After Moat lubash                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 1901.25
    After Moat bugbears                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 2441.25
    After Moat gnolls                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 2733.75
    After Moat crayfish                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 2823.75
    After Moat ghouls                 : Party Level - 2, XP Total: 2936.25
    After Moat Sergeant                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 3116.25
    After Moat Lieutenant                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 3622.5
    After Moat Lareth                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 3757.5
    After Moat Lareth spiders                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 3903.75
    Party Level: 3, XP Total: 3903.75, XP Gained in phase: 2261.25
    
    
    Phase 5:     Moathouse Exit
    Party Level: 3,         XP Total: 3903.75
    After Moathouse Ambush                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 4308.75
    Party Level: 3, XP Total: 4308.75, XP Gained in phase: 405.0
    
    
    Phase 6:     Hommlet, part II: Wrapup
    Party Level: 3,         XP Total: 4308.75
    After Hommlet wrapup quests                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 4477.5
    After Cure Amii                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 4533.75
    After Emridy Meadows undead                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 4818.75
    After Emridy Meadows Skeleton Priest                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 4965.0
    After Emridy Meadows Giant                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 5358.75
    Party Level: 3, XP Total: 5358.75, XP Gained in phase: 1050.0
    
    
    Phase 7:     Nulb
    Party Level: 3,         XP Total: 5358.75
    After Nulb standard quests                 : Party Level - 3, XP Total: 5797.5
    After Skole & Lodriss(+goon encounter)                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 6945.0
    After Imeryds Run                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 7657.5
    After Tolub Brawl                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 8017.5
    Party Level: 4, XP Total: 8017.5, XP Gained in phase: 2658.75
    
    
    Phase 8:     Temple, Level I, KOS Monsters
    Party Level: 4,         XP Total: 8017.5
    After South East Corridor monsters                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 8212.5
    After Undead corridor                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 8422.5
    After East Corridor monsters                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 8655.0
    After Harpy Area                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 9240.0
    After Stirges                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 9330.0
    After Northern ghoul chamber                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 9600.0
    After Black Widows                 : Party Level - 4, XP Total: 9915.0
    After Southern ghoul chamber                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 10275.0
    After Ogre + Goblins + viper                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 10530.0
    After Zombie prisoners                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 10653.75
    Party Level: 5, XP Total: 10653.75, XP Gained in phase: 2636.25
    
    
    Phase 9:     Temple, Level I, Earth Temple
    Party Level: 5,         XP Total: 10653.75
    After Earth Temple simple quests                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 10747.5
    After Earth Temple Altar                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 11040.0
    After Earth Temple Bugbear outpost                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 11283.75
    After Earth Temple Bugbear patrol                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 11396.25
    After Turnkey                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 11583.75
    After Earth Temple Bugbear checkpoint                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 11902.5
    After Earth Temple Guards                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 12060.0
    After Earth Temple Fighters                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 12251.25
    After Gnoll Leader room                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 12757.5
    After Ogre Chief room                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 14043.75
    After Earth Temple Bugbear corridor                 : Party Level - 5, XP Total: 14643.75
    After Earth Temple Troop Commander                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 16031.25
    Party Level: 6, XP Total: 16031.25, XP Gained in phase: 5377.5
    
    
    Phase 10:     Temple, Level II, KOS Monsters
    Party Level: 6,         XP Total: 16031.25
    After Air Temple Pit                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 16278.75
    After Corridor Ogres                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 16818.75
    After Feldrin                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 17876.25
    After Greater Temple Guards                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 18078.75
    After Minotaur                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 18168.75
    After Littlest Troll                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 18236.25
    After Carrion crawler                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 18303.75
    After Werewolves                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 18843.75
    Party Level: 6, XP Total: 18843.75, XP Gained in phase: 2812.5
    
    
    Phase 11:     Temple, Level II, Faction Dealings & Cleanup
    Party Level: 6,         XP Total: 18843.75
    After Air Temple Quests                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 18956.25
    After Fire & Water Temple Quests                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 19181.25
    After Alrrem Fight                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 20013.75
    After Fire Bugbears                 : Party Level - 6, XP Total: 20598.75
    After Water Temple Quests 2&3                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 21903.75
    After Belsornig Fight                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 22586.25
    After Water Snakes                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 22743.75
    After Grurz Fight                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 22927.5
    After Air & Earth Quest 3                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 23085.0
    After Romag Fight                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 23400.0
    After Kelno Fight                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 24043.125
    After Air Kitchen                 : Party Level - 7, XP Total: 24436.9492188
    After Greater Temple Bugbears                 : Party Level - 8, XP Total: 28361.3242188
    After Salamanders                 : Party Level - 8, XP Total: 29381.3242188
    Party Level: 8, XP Total: 29381.3242188, XP Gained in phase: 10537.5742188
    
      Ending Party Level: 8
      Ending XP total: 29381.3242188
      XP mod = 0.45
    
    
    (I've entered game content up to the end of Temple level 2 so far)

    It should be noted that the script doesn't take into account xp loss from character deaths and crafting, or additional XP for party NPCs, or gains from random encounters, and so on. But I think it's enough to get a good estimate on the overall XP progression. Now just to feed the rest of the Temple into the sucker...
     

    Attached Files:

    • txp.zip
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    Last edited: Feb 5, 2010
  14. Sitra Achara

    Sitra Achara Senior Member

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    Okay, I've entered just about everything up to and including the nodes.

    Here are the results, as a function of party size (6,8) and XP mod (25% - 100%)

    Code:
    Level:
           6      8    
    25    9      9    
    35    10    10    
    45    11    10    
    50    12    11    
    55    12    11    
    60    12    11    
    65    13    12    
    70    13    12    
    75    13    12    
    85    14    13    
    100   15   13    
    
    XP:
             6           8    
    25      43985    37340    
    35      53836    45371    
    45      63363    52663    
    50      67148    56080    
    55      71492    60284    
    60      75822    63363    
    65      80889    66132    
    70      84824    69340    
    75      88988    72583    
    85      98334    79492    
    100    111942   89176    
    For full reports, see attachments.
     

    Attached Files:

    Last edited: Feb 6, 2010
  15. Stitched

    Stitched Member

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    People want the game to be Harder? :O What the hell? The game is plenty hard in a lot of places (eg: The Fishing quest as a level 4 party - the Seahag, couple with the KingFrog, is ridiculously hard).
     
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