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New Damage Model


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#1 sir_schwick

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Posted 22 June 2006 - 04:42 PM

One of my big complaints about the first game was how damage was dealt. It could be a random number between 0 and the maxium value(double for X-COM Troops). I guess this was to account for glancing shots, good and bad luck, along with weapon classes. However I think it is time we move to something that is still simple to understand, but takes into account what armor actually does.

First to the model is the idea of penetration. Terran armors are designed to be most effective against projectiles and shrapnel. The temperature of average plasma rounds are not accounted for, reducing the effectiveness of that armor considerably. However aliens suits certainly would focus a lot more on anti-plasma armor types. So, each ammunition type has three penetration values: one for kinetics, the other for thermal, one for laser.

Second is damage, which is not the same as penetration. A flamethrower or IC round will not have as high a ratio of penetration to damage as plasma, which is designed more for penetration then damage. Damage is what happens after some penetration. The types of damage are as follows, and can be in multiple categories(plasma has boht a small kinetic and large thermal component): Thermal, Kinetic, Laser.

Whenever a shot hits its mark, it hits a specific body area(on a human): Left Arm(f/b),Right Arm(f/b),Head(f/b),Torso(f/b/a),Right Leg(f/b),Left Leg(f/b). Then penetration is calculated which then affects base damage. Each body part has different responses to different amounts of damage, based on type. For humans in general, kinetic causes less immediate damage but more wounds, thermal causes more immediate damage and less wounds while laser is in between on immeidate damage and not much on wounding. Of course certain areas would reward certain weapons and has its own unique tolerances. Each creature has their own set of body parts and tolerances, making autopsy reports more interesting and useful.

Depending on level of penetration(but always to some degree), succesful shots degrade the armor area they hit. Degredation results in lower penetration resistance. Absoprtion represents the 'health' of that armor piece which translates to how much of its maxium penetration resistance it has. More damage after penetration means more 'armor health' is lost. Armor also has hidden(or toggleable) values for how it reacts to various damage.

So here is what actually happens in game:

1. Someone gets hit, and in a body area, along with a part of that body area.
2. Penetration values of the weapon are compared against that of the armor piece it must penetrate.
3. Based on penetration level(highest penetration), damage is assigned and dealt out based on body part modifiers.
3b. Based on damage doled to target(assuming they lived, muwhahahaha), the armour is degraded or even completely ruined.

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Here is an index of play values and ideas so you get an idea how this may actually look. It ijnvolves details that are not really that important to discussion as much as just curious. It is a kinda long read, so you have been warned.

Penetration Types Munitions Notes
-Kinetic - This will be found for almost all munitions of significant kinetic energy such as Plasma, Bullets, and shrapnel from most grenade types. Of course shrapnel penetration depends on range from blast, and the kinetic penetration of plasma is much less than that of bullets.
-Thermal - For those weapons that have high thermal potential. Plasma has a large penetration factor in this department. Lasers very small, and flame and IC weapons tend to be low to medium, because they do not penetrate but damage greatly.
-Laser - Pretty much for lasers and hybrid weapons that feature lasers. Of course this includes Lasers(medium to high), and any hybrids that develope.

Penetartion Types Armor Notes
-Kinetic - Human armor is about equal or only slightly inferior to initial alien armor in this respect. However combat elites like Mutons and overall use of grenades will encourage aliens to toughen up against grenades with new armor types.
-Thermal - Human armor is very weak in this until more advanced alien armor hybrids are used. Alien armor is mediocre in this, excluding Reapers which are weak, and Sectopods and Mutons which require better anti-plasma b/c of thier elite status.
-Laser - Few protect against this, although heavier armors tend to have higher penetration reduction. Expect some improvements over time among the aliens, but not a lot. Usually lasers low damage still makes them more useful as sniping then CQB weapons.

Damage Type Notes
-Kinetic - In humans and the squishier aliens in their vital parts, they cause massive wounding. Immediate damage is kind lame against certain 'nonvital' parts of many alien species.
-Thermal - Harmful to most aliens and very harmful to humans. Only those rock thingies are really not bothered. However cauterization and the lack of serious bleeding plus drugs usually make this not as much of a wounder.
-Laser - Only mediocre to poor damage against everything but electronic warriors. Great against HWP, Cyberdisc, and Sectopod. Usually damage modifiers in 'critical areas' allow this to be a great for super accurate soldiers.

Notes on Penetration Indexes
Penetration numbers would usually be in the single digits, with 10 or above being really really high. The comparison would involve little in terms of randomness. Maybe a +1/-1 for ammunition penetration. The penetration of the ammunition would be subtracted by the penetration resistance of the armor. (Weapon Penetration)-(Armor Penetration) = (Penetration).

Notes on Damage after Penetration
All this is relative to the maximum damage the ammuniiton can cause, not including body part modifiers.
The number is the (penetration).
-2 and below means there was no penetration.
-1 = mostly armor damage, almost no health cost
0 = fairly low health cost
1 = moderate health cost
2 = moderate to high health cost
3 and above = very high health cost

Ideas Ideas Ideas
This kind of armor model is not too complicated, and it would also allow for a lot more diversity in ammunition types. It might also allow a tiny bit of diversity in armors you can research. Mostly this means armor has a slightly better chance at protecting you from weaker weapons or glancing hits.

To augment armor, you can build and utilize armor plates. This addons are added at the beginning of missions, cannot be removed ruing mission, and take up the appropraite body space that would normally be used for inventory. Torso plates take up portions of the bakcpack and belt, while back plates takes up the other portions. Arm plates take up the shoulder, while helmet addons could be considered a 'free space'. leg parts take up the leg slots, etc. These plates coudl be anti-plasma, anti-laser, anti-ballistic, but alwasy inhibite TUs to a certain degree and weigh a lot.

#2 GARAK

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Posted 01 July 2006 - 09:21 AM

Makes good sense to me.

#3 Blue.Shark

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Posted 02 July 2006 - 11:27 AM

Yes good idea.

One offtopic : If an alien hits your soldier for example to leg, he will fall down and cannot move, only shoot. If the soldier will be hurt on arm, he cannot shoot, but only move. I think that this thing should be connected with damage types described by sir_schwick. My another stupid offtopic :)

#4 sir_schwick

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Posted 02 July 2006 - 09:58 PM

Blue shark, I think you hit upon something that could be greatly expanded in terms of armor and coolness in general. Performance degredation based on body part damage would be very interestering. Some examples:

1) Your right leg is pretty badly damaged and bleeding, so you basically limp very painfully along. It costs 10 TU to move through a basic square rather than the normal 4 TU. A medic could help alleviate the condition with a 'combat stint', etc. MedKits become much more useful in injury cases.
2) Your arm, or even torso, is damaged, making shooting harder. Accuracy, reactions, and of course strength decrease, although MedKit Stimulants and treatments might create some restoration.
3) Advanced armours(especially Alien ones) try to mitigate injuries effects so fighting can still go on at optimal settings. Mostly using Alien Alloy types that are quick to mold, these armors can help maintain movement. Your leg is partially blown off, but a piece comes out(takes TUs) that at least allow a good bit of movement restoration. Triggering and aiming occurs through attachement to armor, rather than arm so that is mitigated to a certain extent as well.
4) Various hits should cause morale damage for different species. Knowing you are bleeding out the gut is very demoralizing and painful.

#5 Blue.Shark

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Posted 03 July 2006 - 02:25 PM

Good examples :)

I tought about some special equipments and/or upgrades for any type of armour. If a soldier will be damaged, that equipment (upgrade) will boost soldier with any stimulants etc. Those stimulants should work like medikit but a little less efective. If the arm will be damaged, the stimulants will desensitize the whole arm and the aiming will be bad etc...

And next idea. If your soldiers' leg is blown off and that soldier will survive the mission, he will need a "cyber-leg" :). If his arm will be blown off, he will need a "cyber-arm". eh... And what about if somebody will blow up his head? :D :D :D

Edited by Blue.Shark, 03 July 2006 - 02:35 PM.


#6 sir_schwick

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Posted 03 July 2006 - 02:37 PM

Also this can easily be applied to alien suits of armor for the 'WTF' effect. I always imagined Mutons were the elite soldiers with above average quipment that makes them very hard to kill. You take a body part and the armor compensates immediately so that the only way to slow one down is to stop it permanently. Of course this may make mind-control even more vital :devil: .

#7 Snakeman

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Posted 03 July 2006 - 06:04 PM

That's one area I think armors, at least for aliens is a little worth while. Especially headgear in this case. Maybe their's would be such where it amplifies the control of them by their masters but hinders outside psi influence later on.

A combat progression in terms of what you'd see over time and could compensate for could look like this:

1) Aliens for the most part begin with their standard/scales/skinjob armor.

- Conventional warfare against them is about the same as remembered from the original game. Psi if you have it and are good with it are also well recieved.

2) Gradually they start to wear more armor over this where appropriate.

- Conventionals still work, but it takes more of it to take 'em down. Psi still works relatively well.

3) Gradually still, yet more alien armor types appear, now with the improved headgear.

- Now both convential warfare & Psi attacks are equally hindered, each taking on average twice as long for your best individual Psi or soldier to take out a single unit.

However, stacking your units up on one at a time is the mitigator in terms of trying to still get some kind of quick unit take down.

#8 GARAK

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Posted 07 July 2006 - 08:42 AM

I briefly considered psi forcefields or psiarmor, but that would be rediculous and too fantastical for this game.

#9 sir_schwick

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Posted 07 July 2006 - 08:45 AM

Psiforcefields maybe, but it is not unreasonably to assume you could design systems into armor that make psionic attacks more difficult. At some point psionic attacks result in chemical changes in the brain. Additionally they must result in certain thought process changes. Theorhetically the effects are understood well enough(by the aliens) to design gear that makes foreign thought intrustion more difficult. Independent thought buffers via creating loops of domestic thoughts, etc.

#10 kashyyk

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Posted 22 August 2006 - 11:29 AM

Psi force feild could be a sheild wich psi man makes wich stops evrything going frew - psi it has HP depending on how strong the spi is but in the end it gets destroyed wich if a good psi man does it might take 5-6 turns

please tell me your thoughts :)