[How Stuff Works] Defense

ChthonChthon Posts: 1,855
edited December 2014 in TL2 General Discussions
This is a long-overdue companion article to the classic [How Stuff Works] Damage by Armis.

This is the understanding of Torchlight 2's defensive mechanics that I have been able to assemble through empirical testing. I've tried to test everything, including re-testing a lot of things that are "common knowledge" (some of which turned out to be wrong). Where I didn't do the testing myself, I try to provide a link to the thread where the testing was done.


I. The Big Picture – Order of Operations – The Defense Waterfall

When a monster attacks you, the following defensive mechanics apply in the following order:
  • Step 0: Kiting
    If you successfully kite an attack, you take no damage, so stop here. Otherwise, continue to the next step.
  • Step 1: Missile Reflect
    If you successfully reflect an attack via missile reflect, you take no damage, so stop here. Otherwise, continue to the next step.
  • Step 2: Dodge
    If you successfully dodge an attack, you take no damage, so stop here. Otherwise, continue to the next step.
  • Step 3: Armor
    Armor cannot reduce damage below 1, so always continue to the next step.
  • Step 4: Damage Reduction
    Damage reduction cannot reduce damage below 1, so always continue to the next step.
  • Step 5: Damage Absorption
    Even if all the damage from an attack is absorbed, it is still checked for block, so always continue to the next step.
  • Step 6: Block
    If you successfully block an attack, you take no damage, so stop here. Otherwise, continue to the next step.
  • Step 7: Health Loss
    If any damage remains at this point, it is deducted from your health total. If your health is reduced to zero, you die.
  • Step 8: On-Get-Hit Triggers
    If you lost health, and survived the health loss, then these events occur simultaneously:
    • Step 8a: Chance to Cast Fully Heal Self When You Get Hit
    • Step 8b: Damage Reflection

II. The Details

Details of Kiting
“Kiting” refers to the act of moving your character before an attack lands so that it fails to hit. Players coming from Guild Wars 1 should be familiar with the concept. By contrast, this concept may be new to players coming from Diablo 3, where all attacks will land if the target was in range when the attack started. Kiting is not an “official” part of the defensive mechanics. You don’t have a “kiting” entry in your Arcane Statistics panel. It is nevertheless your first line of defense, and also one of the most important.


Details of Missile Reflect
Missile reflect causes a missile attack to bounce off of your character, dealing no damage. If the bounced missile hits a monster, it deals damage based off your weapon DPS.

What qualifies as a “missile” for purposes of missile reflect? There are no fixed rules; every projectile needs to be considered sui generis. Some of the most surprising test results are that Deathflingers’ (Sturmbeorn) spears are not “missiles,” but the possessed Guardian who sometimes charges you during the Act I boss fight is a “missile.” Here is a far-from-complete list of projectiles that I happen to consider important:

Can be reflected:
  • Ratlin Archer’s AoE fire arrow
  • Ratlin Lobber’s molotov cocktail
  • All kinds of tornadoes (Mirka Frostbinder, Tuttara Sandweaver, etc.)
  • Mirka Frostbinder's sigil
  • All kinds of waves (Frost Elemental, Sand Spectre, Spectral Dragonkin)
  • All of the Wraith Lord’s projectiles
  • Venomous Hail/Acid Rain can be reflected... AT YOU. (Think twice before using it on those Ezrohir guys with the reflective shield. You’ll get hit 12 times!)

Can NOT be reflected
  • Deathcap’s “purple **** of doom”
  • Varkolyn Hurler’s poison molotov cocktail (rather unexpected since you can reflect the Ratlin Lobber’s molotov cocktail)
  • Vyrax’s flame breath
  • Goblin Foreman’s bombs
  • Everything the Artifacer does
  • Everything the War Titan does

Sometimes missile reflect is “aimed” directly at the monster that attacked you; sometimes the direction of reflection is random. I’m not sure what controls this.

The chance to reflect missiles from multiple sources stacks multiplicatively, not additively. The easiest way to calculate this is to compute your chance to get hit by multiplying together your chance to get hit with respect to each missile reflect source, then subtract from 100%.
Example: 2 sources of 25% missile reflect
This is NOT correct: 25% + 25% = 50%
This IS correct: 100% - ((100% - 25%) * (100% - 25%)) = 43.75%

When a reflected missile hits a monster, it deals damage based off your weapon DPS, identical to a skill that says it deals “X% of Weapon DPS,” except that it can fumble. See [How Stuff Works] Damage for how to compute damage for skills that use weapon DPS. Reflected missiles do not build charge.

The damage from multiple sources of missile reflect stacks in an odd way. (You might think that, since the chances to reflect missiles from various sources roll independently, you’ll get the Weapon DPS % from whichever source triggers. But that’s not how it works.) Every reflected missile does the percentage of Weapon DPS shown in the Arcane Statistics. As best I can tell, this value is calculated by
D(1) + D(2) + D(3) + … D(n), where:
D(n) = W(n) * ( C(n) / R), where:
W(n) is the Weapon DPS % for the nth source of missile reflect,
C(n) is the chance to reflect for the nth source of missile reflect,
and R is the total chance to reflect missiles from all sources (explained above).

Missile reflect is available from the following sources:
  • Items. Of particular note is Zardon’s Mighty Skull which is a level 100 unique socketable that gives 25% missile reflect.
  • The Berserker’s Ice Shield skill
  • The Outlander’s Shadowmantle skill

Details of Dodge
Dodge stops all damage from a dodged attack. Chance to dodge is capped at 75%.

The scope of things that can be dodged is rather narrow. The most extensive testing that I am aware of was done by forum newcomer Squiggler, who concludes that you can dodge (1) melee autoattacks, and (2) non-aoe ranged autoattacks; Skills can never be dodged. It’s worth noting that the scope of things that can be blocked is significantly broader than the scope of things that can be dodged.

Some basic mathematics about dodge are poorly understood by the overall TL2 community, so I’m going to summarize them here: The survivability benefits of dodge are inherently escalating. So each point of dodge chance is more valuable than the one that came before it.
Classic example:
At 1% dodge, 99 blows in 100 will land. At 2% dodge, 98 blows in 100 will land. Going from 1% to 2% results means you get hit ~99% as often.
At 98% dodge, 2 blows in 100 will land. At 99% dodge, 1 blow in 100 will land. Going from 98% to 99% means you get hit half as often. If you can survive for an average of 60 seconds without heals at 98% dodge, then you'll survive for an average of 120 seconds without heals at 99% dodge.
(There is no way to go above 75% dodge. This is an example only.)
You can read more about this in this classic thread by Rokiyo and oneOverZero.

Some important consequences of this:
  • 75% dodge will improve your survivability (as measured by how much raw damage the monsters must dish out to kill you) by 4x.
  • 75% dodge will improve your survivability by twice as much as 50% dodge (4x vs. 2x).
  • The 75th point of dodge chance improves your survivability from ~3.85x to 4x all by itself. (Because each point of dodge chance is more valuable than the one that came before it, the last one is the most important one.)

Dodge is available from the following sources:
  • Dexterity gives dodge chance according to the formula “Dodge_Chance_From_ Dex = Dex * (0.2002 – 0.0002 * Dex)” up to a cap of 50.1% chance to dodge at 500 Dexterity.
  • Dodge chance is available as an item modifier.
  • 1% Dodge chance is available on the unique socketable the Eye of King Pogg.
  • Dodge chance is available as an enchantment from the elemental oasis enchanter on some items (e.g. shields).
  • Dodge chance is available from various skills.
  • Dodge chance is available from the Outlander charge bar talent.

Details of Armor
Armor subtracts a flat integer amount from incoming damage. The amount subtracted is a random amount between 50% and 100% of your armor value.

Depending upon whether the attack that hits you is physical, fire, ice, electric, or poison, your corresponding armor value will be used.

If the incoming damage is multi-typed, each damage type is handled separately during the armor and damage reduction steps, then added together. For multi-typed damage, armor is pro-rated according each damage type’s share of the total damage. (Example: If a monster’s multi-type attack deals 120 fire damage, 60 ice damage, and 20 poison damage, then 60% of your fire armor will be applied to the fire damage portion, 30% of your ice armor will be applied to the ice damage portion, and 10% of your poison armor will be applied to the poison damage portion.) There is a bug in the way this pro-rating is done when a multi-type hit is part physical that causes the proportion of physical armor applied to be improperly doubled, capped (I think) at 100%. (Lest you think that this is a “good” bug, remember that it also applies when you hit a monster with your fancy multi-type weapon.)

If armor would reduce incoming damage to 0, it is reduced to 1 instead.

Armor comes primarily from items. It is also available from some skills (e.g. Berserker’s Shred Armor skill).

You can get a percentage-based increase to the armor you already have from the following sources:
  • Vitality increases armor by 0.25% per point of Vitality.
  • The “Armor Expertise <X>” spell scrolls increase physical armor, up to 24% from the “Armor Expertise VI” scroll.
  • Several skills (e.g. Engineer’s Bulwark skill) increase armor on a percentage basis.

Details of Damage Reduction
Damage reduction reduces incoming damage by a percentage amount. It applies after the incoming damage is reduced by armor.

Like armor, you have independent damage reduction values for physical, fire, ice, electric, and poison. (Although there is an “all damage reduced” modifier that boosts all of them at once.)

Damage reduction is capped at 75%.

If damage reduction would reduce incoming damage below 1, it is reduced to 1 instead.

Damage reduction is available from the following sources:
  • Berserkers and Engineers have an inherent 25% damage reduction.
  • Damage reduction is available from a number of item modifiers and item enchantments. Most notably, the Eye of Grell, which is available as a drop from General Grell halfway through Act I, is a socketable that gives 3% damage reduction (all types); and the Skull of Limoany, which is available in any area that can drop level 62 items, is a socketable that gives 5% damage reduction (all types).
  • Some skills give damage reduction. Most notably, the Embermage’s Immolation Aura gives 15% damage reduction (all types) at max rank.

Details of Damage Absorption
Damage absorption is a unique mechanic that is only available from the Engineer skills Forcefield and Aegis of Fate. Damage absorption applies after the incoming damage is reduced by armor and damage reduction. Assuming your forcefield/aegis has adequate hitpoints, damage absorption negates all incoming damage and your forcefield/aegis loses that many hitpoints. If your forcefield/aegis does not have enough hitpoints, an amount of damage equal to the forcefield/aegis’s hitpoints is negated, the forcefield/aegis is destroyed, and the remaining damage is applied to your health.

Even if all the incoming damage is negated, the zero-damage hit is still passed on to the next step for a block check.

If both Forcefield and Aegis of Fate are active, whichever one was activated first will apply first and absorb the incoming damage. The overwhelming majority of the time, Aegis of Fate will get activated first, because an active Forcefield usually prevents you from taking the damage necessary to activate Aegis of Fate. In the rare cases where Forcefield is activated before Aegis of Fate, if you recast Forcefield before it expires, it will continue to count as having been activated before Aegis of Fate.

Sources of damage coming up from the ground (such as standing in fire) generally bypass your forcefield/aegis.

The rules that prevent armor and damage reduction from reducing incoming damage below 1 do not seem to apply if the damage is absorbed instead of health lost. (For example, in one test I observed 10 hits reducing a Forcefield’s hitpoints by 0.6 in total.)


Details of Block
Block stops all damage from a blocked attack. You must have a shield equipped in order to block. Chance to block is capped at 75%.

Unlike dodge, just about everything in the game can be blocked. (Even some crazy things like the environmental damage in the Luminous Area can be blocked.)

The mathematics of block are identical to those of dodge. Please refer to the description of dodge above.

Block is available from the following sources:
  • Vitality gives block chance according to the formula “Block_Chance_From_ Vit = Vit * (0.2002 – 0.0002 * Vit)” up to a cap of 50.1% chance to block at 500 Vitality.
  • Block chance is available as an item modifier, particularly on shields.
  • Block chance is available as an enchantment on shields from the general, master, and grandmaster enchanters.
  • Block chance comes as a benefit from the “Blocking <X>” spell scrolls, up to 12% from the “Blocking VI” scroll.


Details of Health Loss
Any damage that remains after the preceding steps is deducted from your health total. If your health falls below 20%, a red glow will appear around the border of your screen to warn you that you are in imminent danger. If your health is reduced to zero, you die. (Due to a rounding issue in the display, you may still be alive with a health display of zero. In this instance you actually have somewhere between 0 and 0.5 health remaining.)

Extra health is available from a number of sources:
  • You begin the game with 200 health and gain 40 health per level.
  • Vitality gives 3.6 health per point of Vitality.
  • Health is available from a number of item modifiers and item enchantments. Most notably, Skull of Riechliu, which is available in any area that can drop level 73 items, is a socketable that give 1540 health. Earlier in the game, blood embers are a good source of extra health.
When your maximum health changes (for instance, if you hit the ‘W’ key to switch to a weapon set with a smaller health bonus), your current health does not change, unless it exceeds the new maximum (in which case your current health is reduced to the new maximum). Therefore it is not possible to end up in the “negative health” state that is possible in some other games such as Guild Wars 1.


Details of Chance to Cast Fully Heal Self When You Get Hit
This is a rare mechanic that is available from a small number of item modifiers and item enchantments, usually on amulets. It can also be found on the rare unique socketable Lito Inso's Lens. When triggered, you are automatically healed to full health over a very short period of time.

It can only be triggered if you actually lost health as the result of an attack. (E.g. it will not trigger if Forcefield negates all the incoming damage.)

The heal occurs after the health loss from the attack, so you must have enough health to survive the attack to gain the benefit of the full heal.


Details of Damage Reflection
There are two types of damage reflection, both of which deal damage back to a monster that damages you. Damage reflection does NOT reduce the amount of damage you take; it only makes the monster take damage too.

Integer damage reflection deals a flat amount of damage back to the monster that damaged you. It always deals exactly this much damage, even if the monster dealt less damage to you in the first place. It does not scale with anything. Integer damage reflection will only trigger if you actually lost health as the result of an attack. (E.g. it will not trigger if Forcefield negates all the incoming damage.)

Percent damage reflection deals a percentage of the damage a monster did to you back to the monster. The amount of damage dealt is based on the actual amount of health you lost. It does not scale with anything else. Obviously, percent damage reflection will only trigger if you actually lost health as the result of an attack.

Damage reflect will not trigger if an attack kills you.

Integer damage reflect is available from items.

Percent damage reflect is available from skills (Embermage’s Ice Prison and Outlander’s Stone Pact) and the “Retribution <X>” spell scrolls.


III. Some Conclusions

In TL2, as levels increase, the amount of damage monsters deal grows much faster than player health and armor possibly can. This trend is especially pronounced on Elite difficulty level. As a result, you are required to devise a defense that can survive a steady stream of potential one-hit kills.

Early on, before this trend becomes pronounced, many things may work to keep you alive. Over the long term, however, there is one, and only one, strategy for dealing with the constant threat of being one-hit killed: Avoid getting hit as much as possible, and, when you do get hit, rely on percentage damage reduction to make the hits survivable.

Therefore:

The most important defensive measure is damage reduction. This is the only thing that’s going to make a huge hit that would otherwise be a one-hit kill into something you can survive. Every serious build should have 75% damage reduction, and getting there should by your highest priority on the defensive side of your build development. (Have fun farming Limoanies. :D )

Collectively, the mechanics that cause you to take no damage at all from an attack -- kiting, block, missile reflect, and dodge -- are the second-most important defensive measure. Dodge falls somewhat behind the other three because its scope of coverage is inferior to block’s.

The third-most important defensive measure is extra health. This is not because it’s an inherently strong mechanic (it’s not), but rather because Skull of Riechliu allows you to increase it so dramatically.

Armor is basically meaningless. Not only is it badly outscaled by monster damage, but its effectiveness is also reduced by any damage reduction you have.

(To be as charitable as possible to armor, it's reasonably effective early on before monster damage scaling really gets going. A player who only did the first playthrough and did not do mapworks or NG+ might not encounter very many situations where no feasible amount of armor makes a meaningful difference.)


IV. Some Commentary

All in all, there is some satisfying depth to Torchlight 2's defensive mechanics. Even though damage reduction is clearly dominant, most of the other mechanics are both meaningful and necessary, creating a fun min-maxing problem. The presence of kiting keeps things interesting by making player skill a big factor in survivability.

That said, there are some problems with the system:
  • The most important defensive stat, damage reduction, is ridiculously hard to obtain. It's only available as an inherent modifier on a handful of items, most of which are unique rarity; and from two unique socketables, with the better one having a pretty ridiculous level restriction on where it drops.
  • Armor is basically worthless.
  • The system is opaque. An objective observer studying the UI for hints would likely conclude that armor is the main defensive mechanic. And that objective observer would be dead wrong. By the same token, an objective observer studying the UI would be hard pressed to find any clue that damage reduction is extremely important.
  • With the introduction of Tarroch's Tomb, there are now a few monsters that pretty much require a shield (or a big range advantage) to survive. This puts too big of a crimp in build diversity. This problem could be solved by broadening dodge's scope or introducing a new parry/weapon block mechanic with a wider scope.
  • Damage absorption applying before block is kind of a kick in the nuts for Engineers.

The issues with armor and damage reduction are the biggest problem. To be honest, they call for a total redesign that would give armor some kind of percentage reduction effect (and probably change damage reduction into an integer reduction applied after armor). A "band-aid" solution would be to change the order of operations so that armor applies after damage reduction. (To avoid unbalancing things on the damage dealing side, damage reduction would need to be split off from damage increase effects like Howl, or those effects would also have to give their targets a corresponding armor boost.) This would at least make armor meaningful, if still not anywhere close to being the main defensive mechanic.

[edit: Cleaned up a few typos, added RetsReds's point about armor not being worthless at low levels.]
Torchlight 2 Rapid Respec - Putting the "hack" in "hack-n-slash"
StashNinja - INFINITE Stash for Torchlight 2
NullMod - Play together in the same multiplayer game with different mods!
«1

Comments

  • NeophytoiNeophytoi Posts: 3,539
    This needs to be stickied!

    Not sure where, though. May need a whole new forum... I'll contact Brian and see what can be done.

    (The "speculative" sections (i.e., the last two bits) will likely require their own post, however, as they're opinion... well thought-out opinion, true... but still opinion ;) )
    never let your hatred of people who would bar you from the Inviolable House of Worship lead you into the sin of aggression: but rather help one another in furthering virtue and ****-consciousness, and do not help one another in furthering evil and enmity
  • RetsRedsRetsReds Posts: 1,013
    Great job, as always, Chthon, absolutely awesome! :)

    I have only one tiny, tiny comment - do armor some justice. Sure, it is absolutely worthless for about 80% of the gaming time of a 100 lvl character (more if he keeps playing after reaching lvl 100), but for the first playthrough - up to lvl 50 - it has it's usefulness.
    Basically (the way I see it, at least) armor is made the way it is for the majority of the gamers that will complete the first playthrough 2-3 times and then stop playing. That's why the system is "opaque" - to be visible and obvious for that majority of, let's call them - "casual" gamers (nothing negative is implied). For the rest of us - there is %DR. Note that I'm not defending the system - I too would like the changes you suggest. I just meant to say that maybe armor could use 1-2 more sentences. :)

    Cheers and thanks for the continual efforts to make us into an actual community! :)
  • VorodarVorodar Posts: 691
    Hey, this is great, Chthon! Most of the things I already knew but putting all in one place is so much better. And there were nuggets here and there I didn't know, which was informative. Awesome work, keep it up :D
    Call your dogs! They can feast on your corpses!
    Grovel before your true master.

    I <3 thunderlocusicon.jpg
  • RedvexRedvex Posts: 966
    Great job there Chthon, thanks =)
  • This is at least the second time I've read that Block **** for Engineers using Forcefield. Am I correct in my understanding that the damage that I block is still subtracted from my FF? As a solo player who likes to use a 1h/shield combo, would it be better to max Block to 75% and get Aegis of Fate instead of FF--or should I ditch the shield altogether and get a 2h or DW setup with FF?
  • D2HansD2Hans Posts: 3,030 ✭✭✭
    Blocking is still good for a force field engineer when FF goes down you still have a chance to block any damage that might come before you can recast FF.

    Aegis of Fate is alright if you build your character around getting defence as high as possible (Flat Armour Rating) but in Elite you will still have issues since you do have to get hit quite a bit for the AoF to trigger and the absorption of AoF will not be as high as FF at higher character levels since Flat Armour Rating does not scale as well as FF.
    "Six... one, six... the nuuuumber ooof the beeeaaast!"
  • ChthonChthon Posts: 1,855
    This is at least the second time I've read that Block **** for Engineers using Forcefield. Am I correct in my understanding that the damage that I block is still subtracted from my FF?

    Yes.

    But a better way to think of it is that forcefield happens before block. By the time block gets a crack at it, forcefield already negated the damage, so you're blocking a zero-damage hit.
    As a solo player who likes to use a 1h/shield combo, would it be better to max Block to 75% and get Aegis of Fate instead of FF--or should I ditch the shield altogether and get a 2h or DW setup with FF?

    Aegis of Fate is still before block, so it has exactly the same problem.

    Forcefield and block are both still useful in their own rights even though they don't synergize worth a darn. Basically, you'll have a situation where block does nothing so long as forcefield is up, but stops 75% of incoming hits when forcefield is down. (Which is when you need it most.) It's up to you to decide if that's worth more or less to you than benefits of a 2H or DW.
    Torchlight 2 Rapid Respec - Putting the "hack" in "hack-n-slash"
    StashNinja - INFINITE Stash for Torchlight 2
    NullMod - Play together in the same multiplayer game with different mods!
  • SerkevanSerkevan Posts: 1,586
    I was wondering why it was relevant that block is applied after FF, hadn't thought of that. I assume that might be for balance purposes, since having 75% block before Forcefield would turn you into an unstoppable machine since it would increase your FF's strength by 4.
  • RetsRedsRetsReds Posts: 1,013
    Serkevan wrote:
    having 75% block before Forcefield would turn you into an unstoppable machine since it would increase your FF's strength by 4.

    This. Having extra 70000 health points is rather awesome even if they are applied before block. After all 2Handers need some love anyway, we don't want to make them too obsolete. :P
    And besides - strictly visibly and logicically speaking (logic in fantasy video games, I know, I know ...) - It'd be quite hard for my little Techie to stretch her shield outside the Forcefield to try to block every time a mean, green, skeletal, transparent, ghost, broad-shouldered, dragon thingy tries to squish her. :ugeek:
  • Moose123Moose123 Posts: 198
    So damage reduction reduces the damage forcefield takes?

    So for example I have forcefield up and take 100000 damage.
    I have maxed damage reduction, 75%. And we'll assume no armor.
    The final damage dealt to my forcefield and potentially me is 25000.

    Did I get that right?
  • RetsRedsRetsReds Posts: 1,013
    Moose123 wrote:
    Did I get that right?

    Yep.
  • Moose123Moose123 Posts: 198
    Sweet! Forcefield is even better than I thought it was!
  • taglagtaglag Posts: 59
    Thx u very much for this post, it helped me to understand many things about the game much better.
  • RomfourRomfour Posts: 5
    This is awesome! Really. Thank you for the effort.
    The [How Stuff Works] series really deserve sticking.

    Though I have a question not mentioned in the post: how do damage reducing applied to mobs work? Like the poison effect(33%) and Outlander skill Cursed Dagger(20% at lv1, 34% at lv15), etc. I can imagine several possible way:
    1). Applied before armor (literally)
    2). Multiplicative to the Damage Reduction on player
    3). Add to the Damage Reduction on player
    The difference between 2) and 3) is huge because if it goes like 3) it share the 75% cap so the related skill can mean few and less to the end game players.
    Or does it work any other way? Do anyone have an idea?
  • ChthonChthon Posts: 1,855
    Romfour wrote:
    This is awesome! Really. Thank you for the effort.
    The [How Stuff Works] series really deserve sticking.

    Though I have a question not mentioned in the post: how do damage reducing applied to mobs work? Like the poison effect(33%) and Outlander skill Cursed Dagger(20% at lv1, 34% at lv15), etc. I can imagine several possible way:
    1). Applied before armor (literally)
    2). Multiplicative to the Damage Reduction on player
    3). Add to the Damage Reduction on player
    The difference between 2) and 3) is huge because if it goes like 3) it share the 75% cap so the related skill can mean few and less to the end game players.
    Or does it work any other way? Do anyone have an idea?

    I do not know. I will test it out when I have time.
    Based on the phrasing, I think #3 is probably the case, but that's just an educated guess.
    Torchlight 2 Rapid Respec - Putting the "hack" in "hack-n-slash"
    StashNinja - INFINITE Stash for Torchlight 2
    NullMod - Play together in the same multiplayer game with different mods!
  • SerkevanSerkevan Posts: 1,586
    Looking at the skill files, it adds a debuff to the monsters that are hit; if I know anything about how stats work, it simply reduces the incoming damage first and foremost.

    Quick example: daggers at 20% damage reduction. Monster hits normally for 1000. You have X defenses (irrelevant). After being hit, monster deals 800 damage. You still have X defenses, which apply exactly the same way as they did before.

    At least, that's what logic says.
  • RetsRedsRetsReds Posts: 1,013
    Romfour wrote:
    This is awesome! Really. Thank you for the effort.
    The [How Stuff Works] series really deserve sticking.

    Though I have a question not mentioned in the post: how do damage reducing applied to mobs work? Like the poison effect(33%) and Outlander skill Cursed Dagger(20% at lv1, 34% at lv15), etc. I can imagine several possible way:
    1). Applied before armor (literally)
    2). Multiplicative to the Damage Reduction on player
    3). Add to the Damage Reduction on player
    The difference between 2) and 3) is huge because if it goes like 3) it share the 75% cap so the related skill can mean few and less to the end game players.
    Or does it work any other way? Do anyone have an idea?

    The way I see it, it's "Step -1" so to speak ... (where step 0 is kitting, step 1 is Missile Reflect, step 2 is Dodge etc). It just lowers the damage that monsters do in general and has nothing to do with the 75% DR cap. It comes before it.
    I could be wrong of course as I don't bother with theoricrafting, testing, etc, but I think it's only logical for it to be so ... if I'm wrong, then:
    1- I've played all my 800 hours wrong. :D
    2- There are a lot more useless-in-end-game skills. :)
  • wolfmanewolfmane Posts: 1,997
    Your definition of kiting is slightly different from my definition and it might be worthwhile to make a point explaining that in your OP.

    kiting: The act of kiting is a combat tactic where a player character keeps a mob or another player at a certain distance, usually out of melee distance but within ranged attack, and lures the pursuer toward the PC's direction while dealing damage at the same time.

    Maybe I'm splitting hairs though.
    Armor is basically worthless.
    The system is opaque. An objective observer studying the UI for hints would likely conclude that armor is the main defensive mechanic. And that objective observer would be dead wrong. By the same token, an objective observer studying the UI would be hard pressed to find any clue that damage reduction is extremely important.

    That explains quite a bit, thank you.

    Reading over this, there seems to be quite a lot of inconsistency in TL2's combat system or lots of exceptions-to-the-rule, which is something I was hoping would be smoothed out and made more transparent compared to simlar problems that were present in TL's combat system.
    sig2p.png
  • VorodarVorodar Posts: 691
    wolfmane wrote:
    Your definition of kiting is slightly different from my definition and it might be worthwhile to make a point explaining that in your OP.

    kiting: The act of kiting is a combat tactic where a player character keeps a mob or another player at a certain distance, usually out of melee distance but within ranged attack, and lures the pursuer toward the PC's direction while dealing damage at the same time.

    Maybe I'm splitting hairs though.

    I'm with you - that's the definition I normally associate with "kiting". On the other hand, I it is also used for "dodging" as in "moving away from attacks" in the context of a different online games - Chthon mentioned Guild Wars but I think there were one or two MMOs that also used the term before it.
    Call your dogs! They can feast on your corpses!
    Grovel before your true master.

    I <3 thunderlocusicon.jpg
  • JanxJanx Posts: 37
    Hey Chthon, thank you so much for this awesome post.
  • SogetsuSogetsu Posts: 462
    Sorry for the bump, but I think this thread is one of the most useful on the forums... so better stay necroed than buried.

    GSFirmaEfectos.jpg
  • RetsRedsRetsReds Posts: 1,013
    Sogetsu wrote:
    Sorry for the bump, but I think this thread is one of the most useful on the forums... so better stay necroed than buried.

    I wouldn't say it's necroed or buried - every second time someone asks a question about damage or defence someone else links him to these two topics. They are probably the two most linked-to topics in the forum.
    Not that it's bad for them to also be on the front page ofc. ;)
  • D2HansD2Hans Posts: 3,030 ✭✭✭
    Maybe this should be stickied or a link added TL2 General faq.

    It might be a good idea to have thread with key facts, suggestions for the new comers, etc. With links to the threads that might help them out.
    "Six... one, six... the nuuuumber ooof the beeeaaast!"
  • Yeah, this needs to be a pinned resource in some fashion for sure.
  • PokeyPokey Posts: 1,031
    kuhchung wrote:
    Yeah, this needs to be a pinned resource in some fashion for sure.

    Can't recall a sticky on these forums from a user; but if any deserved it, it's this.
    “WITH A FEW SMALL MODIFICATIONS, ANY CANOE CAN TRAVEL THROUGH TIME!!!”

    Dirty.gifPensive.gifFlirty.gif
  • It would be fun to have a h-factor for posts and citations on theorycrafting.
  • First of all, let me say thanks for making this thread. I'm sure it took a lot of work, and it is very useful.

    However, I do have a problem with the way you address dodge, because I think the thread you took it from is also wrong. In Rokiyo's post, he clearly shows that you get diminishing returns after 212 Dex, in terms of TTL.

    However, the following is wrong, or at least it's wrong in sense that looking at a glass as half-empty or half-full is wrong.
    The key thing to note however, is that a statistic like Dodge% has inherent escalating returns:

    At 1% dodge, 99 blows in 100 will land. At 2% dodge, 98 blows in 100 will land. Going from 1% to 2% results means you get hit 99% as often.
    At 98% dodge, 2 blows in 100 will land. At 99% dodge, 1 blow in 100 will land. Going from 98% to 99% means you get hit half as often. If you can survive for an average of 60 seconds without heals at 98% dodge, then you'll survive for an average of 120 seconds without heals at 99% dodge.
    EDIT: There is no way to go above 75% dodge. This is an example only.

    While it is true that going from 98% dodge to 99% will reduce the number of hits you take by half, that is only because 97 out of 100 hits had already been removed before you even got to 98%. Each percentage of dodge only removes 1 hit in 100, no matter how you slice it. Reducing the number of hits you take by half isn't very impressive when you were only getting hit 2 times in 100 to start with. Do you guys understand? You are taking away a larger percentage of the hits taken, but it's coming from a smaller pie. Dodge is not like, for example, the radius of a circle, where doubling the radius more than doubles the area.
  • The issues with armor and damage reduction are the biggest problem. To be honest, they call for a total redesign that would give armor some kind of percentage reduction effect (and probably change damage reduction into an integer reduction applied after armor). A "band-aid" solution would be to change the order of operations so that armor applies after damage reduction. (To avoid unbalancing things on the damage dealing side, damage reduction would need to be split off from damage increase effects like Howl, or those effects would also have to give their targets a corresponding armor boost.) This would at least make armor meaningful, if still not anywhere close to being the main defensive mechanic.

    I agree and hope Runic realizes how messed up their system is. A solution that works within the current framework (but would require massive enemy damage nerfs) is to give players -75% base DR (-50% for melee classes) and cap %DR at 0. This maintains the 75% 'spread' so mod-makers wouldn't have to re-do all of their gear. Players would still plan their item builds as they currently do.

    However, hitting capped DR is no longer an automatic necessity for end game content in difficult mods like Synergies. Consider the 2 scenarios where a player is 25% away from the capped amount. In the current setup this means he's taking 100% more damage as someone who is capped. In the proposed setup he's taking 25% more damage than someone who is capped. The latter is MUCH easier to design end-game monster damage levels. This also increases the effectiveness of armor 4-5 fold.

    -ps Does anyone (including Runic) know if its possible to lower the 75% DR cap through GUTS?
  • ChthonChthon Posts: 1,855
    xrosseyed wrote:
    -ps Does anyone (including Runic) know if its possible to lower the 75% DR cap through GUTS?

    Both Salan and myself have searched GUTS and the dat files pretty thoroughly, and not found the cap. Working on the assumption that it may be hardcoded, I've also tried to find the cap in the executable, and I've had no better luck there. Soooo. I haven't a clue where it is, and I don't think anyone else does either.
    Torchlight 2 Rapid Respec - Putting the "hack" in "hack-n-slash"
    StashNinja - INFINITE Stash for Torchlight 2
    NullMod - Play together in the same multiplayer game with different mods!
  • D2HansD2Hans Posts: 3,030 ✭✭✭
    Best way to do it is by limiting damage reduced by a percent on items, maybe even remove them from items altogether.
    "Six... one, six... the nuuuumber ooof the beeeaaast!"
«1
Sign In or Register to comment.