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DrTenabrae

making combat more better

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Lets take an example of the two direct enemies we currently have in the game.

The drifter is a mindless zombie, it just wants to smash. It does mid range damage but is slow and easy to escape or avoid.

The wolf is is a berserker, it rushes, does massive damage, and while it doesn't outrun you entirely, the slightest hitch in fleeing (bumping into an edge, tree,rock) and it will catch you.


Drifters are ok (the basic drifter) ... they won't murder a new player in one hit, they are a threat in a group. They're predictable and give you the impression of jerk enemy who is super annoying but for a veteran player, even in early game, they're not a big deal.

The wolf is nuts, an early game player who doesn't pillar or immediately flee is straight dead. Little short of an iron sword will kill a wolf before it kills an anurmoured player, and if there are multiple, you're dead.

How do we make the wolf a better opponent ?


Do we give the player armour that ignores much of the wolf's attack, then boost the wolfs damage to compensate ? ... We shouldn't... lets say no.

Do we make the wolf a more interesting enemy ?

Wolves are pack hunters so we spawn them in packs.

A dog bite is pretty savage but also not that easy for a dog to accomplish against an aware opponent...

so lets give wolf _2_ attacks...

a good damage bite, it has a long animation, maybe you can avoid it.

 and a lower damage claw/body slam, this is fast but hurts less. perhaps it slows the player briefly so another wolf can get the bite in.

wolves are smart, they dont want to fight dangerous opponents

when a wolf gets damaged it backs off briefly instead of continuing its berserk attack

when a wolf gets killed, the rest of the pack run

if the player pursues the fleeing wolves they return to the attack, no one wants to be run down like a dog (ha!)

Wolves do not like fire

A player with a torch in their active hand can swing it to make the wolves back off. As long as he wields the fire he's fairly safe. Attacking the wolf with a torch may get it to flee (depenging on how many there are)

Now the wolf is a lot more interesting, its still a threat, that bite is nasty but you might get lucky and avoid it.

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Generic combat improvement

We now have damage types as well as damage ranks (boo!)

Some enemies should be more or less vulnerable to types of damage.

Great you have a sword, rock golem doesn't really care how often you slash or stab it, did you bring a hammer ?

Soft slow animal does NOT like getting pierced, hunting meat, take a bow or spear.

Wolf is pretty agile, it's not too worried about your hammer or bow, they hurt but can be avoided, that sword is pretty fast and hard to see though, poor mr wolf.

Rock/paper/scissors is a universal concept that is pretty easy to implement. It won't fit all situations sure... that rock golem probably doesn't care about much at all but if you have the durability even a dagger will grind it down eventually... but its HARDER than using the right tool.

Similarly, massive bear or charging ram don't really care about your armoured body, they just want to smash you, smash you good ! You'd be better off running, or dodging. Don't wear a brigandine to a bear fight.

 

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Enemies having multiple different attacks is certainly a necessary addition that I hope gets added soon. Maybe combat actions other than attacks would also be a good thing, like certain enemies being able to heal or summon things. For them to make sense to have animations, they should be able to be canceled by the player, by for example attacking the enemy during it's healing animation.

I however don't think that multiple damage types would be a good idea, as the only thing it really adds for the player is needing to bring more weapons, however these are forged and handle very similar to each other, just having different damage types. I think normal damage and anti-armor/armor bypassing/armor reduction/whatever to counter armor damage would be enough to differentiate most enemies, being either heavily armored, a bit armored or not armored at all. It could also have a bigger effect on the playstyle,  having slow heavy attacks bypassing (more) armor, rather than always needing to bring a warhammer.

Other than that, some enemies could have very strong armor that can be partially/fully removed by using pickaxe on them, not needing players to bring another weapon type, maybe even having to target armored spots with the pickaxe to reveal weak spots. That would however require a location damage system, which I also think would make a great addition to the combat, especially ranged combat (headshots, etc.).

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Yeah you're right that power attacks could take a similar role to damage types.

I like the idea of coming equipped for the job though, if you're going locust hunting be ready to smash armour, if it's food hunting a bow or spear.

More enemy types will make that more relevant, seems like the corrupt enemies will all be metal.

 

You can have multiple attacks now on enemies,the problem is they're more time based than probability. With bear I had to give the rake attack a large cooldown or it would small it alongside the normal claw.

The system also has a time before damaging so you could already animate in telegraphing.

 

I agree on different actions as well, wolf howls could bring other wolves that are nearby or if the player has killed some of the pack but keeps chasing them perhaps they could increase the chance of more wolves spawning as they flee.

 

Locusts could slow or trip you, I'm sure we all get the idea. But overall it's definitely an AI thing in my mind... Better, not stronger enemies.

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