Enemy Balancing

Frostorm

[]D[][]V[][]D aka "Staf00"
Veteran
Joined
Feb 22, 2016
Messages
1,116
Reaction score
809
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I wanted to see how you guys go about tuning and balancing the enemies in your games. Do you just go by feel or employ a specific method when creating an enemy's stats in the database? I personally do the following...

For primary stats, I give them a pool of points that totals level x 10. For the record, the enemy level has zero variance and is simply there for my reference and isn't shown to the player. If an enemy is "lv 10" then it will have 100 stat points to work with. I will then distribute it in various proportions into Strength (ATK), Dexterity (AGI), Intellect (MAT), Constitution (DEF), Willpower (MDF), and Speed (LUK). For HP, I start by giving it level x 10, so our example enemy will have 100 HP. The MP stat in my game is valued at 60% of HP, so this enemy gets 60 MP. From there I'll tweak HP and MP so it's more in line with the type of enemy it is. I'll adjust it incrementally: For every ±5 HP, it gets ±3 MP and vise versa. Here's what I made using this method:

Goblin Warrior
1594805421989.png
HP: 120
MP: 48
ATK: 22
MAT: 10
AGI: 20
DEF: 20
MDF: 12
LUK: 16

Goblin Shaman
1594805574527.png
HP: 80
MP: 72
ATK: 12
MAT: 24
AGI: 14
DEF: 16
MDF: 18
LUK: 16

Note: In my game, each point of DEF & MDF also increases HP & MP by +1 respectively. So their HP/MP would actually be...

Goblin Warrior - HP: 140 / MP: 60
Goblin Shaman - HP: 96 / MP: 90

As a result, the Goblin Warrior requires ~4 normal attacks to kill while the Goblin Shaman requires ~3 normal attacks to kill, assuming the player is also level 10 and using either a 2H weapon such as a Staff, Bow or Greatsword or is Dual Wielding (so they get 2 hits in per attack). If the player is using a single 1H weapon (such as in the case of a tank), the Goblin would require twice as many attacks to kill.

Edit: Adding the % damage taken due to DEF & MDF...
  • Goblin Warrior
    • 91.67% physical damage
    • 98.21% magical damage
  • Goblin Shaman
    • 94.83% physical damage
    • 93.22% magical damage
I'd love to hear how you guys approach enemy tuning/balancing!
 
Last edited:

Waifus69

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Jun 30, 2020
Messages
38
Reaction score
16
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I usually balance my enemies using a combination of lore and gameplay. A regular slime will have a small amount of HP but they will have a lot of defense to compensate, but they’re weak to fire so any fire spell will melt them pretty fast.
I just think “How will this fare up against this?” and balance from there.
 

ScorchedGround

Blizzards most disappointed fan
Veteran
Joined
Apr 12, 2020
Messages
204
Reaction score
317
First Language
German
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I suppose you have to be way more diligent with your balancing since you are using LTBS.
So I can't really speak on that.

I myself generally don't tend to overthink my balancing. When creating new enemies, I mostly look at previous enemies and tweak their stats a little bit upwards. Of course, I distribute the stats logically depending on what stats the enemy needs. Same deal with bosses, even though that is a bit more tricky since bosses shouldn't really rely on stats alone. So you need to balance stats and boss mechanics.
For example I have a boss with pretty low offensive stats and only mediocre defensive stats, but he bombards you with all kinds of debilitating status effects.

Also, playtesting, a lot of playtesting.
 

Black Pagan

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Feb 21, 2017
Messages
302
Reaction score
225
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Well, I think Balance mainly depends on Damage Formula you use. I would simply create the Player Character stats first, then base the enemies off the player base stats. Also, I dont like the default formula, I prefer much smaller numbers.

I assign various types of enemies and focus on one or two stats being very high for enemy, Giving them an advantage in that particular role. So, Depending on the Number of Characters in Player Party, I would give enemies 25 - 50% less Stats that the Player Character stats that they are based off. So I would say my enemy stats are linked pretty much to my Player Base Stats. Also, Like i said I prefer much smaller numbers with the Damage formula : (a.atk*0.5 - b.def*0.25) or something similar to this.

I just make sure Fully Geared Players always deal 3 ~ 5 times more damage than the enemies so combat remains interesting. This above formula uses pretty small numbers in 2 Digits and 3 Digits at higher levels, Which means balancing is pretty simple and takes little effort. I guess all this changes, Depending on whats your Damage Formula.

Also an important note is Hit-Rate and Crit Chance, they are very important in Balance. I would never give most enemies anything above 85% Hit-Rate or 15% Crit Chance, Unless they are Powerful Monsters or Boss Monsters. With regard to Status Afflictions, I prefer to give almost all the enemies a very low chance of afflicting Status Afflictions, Like 1%... 2%...3% so on, Normally i keep it below 5% because lets face it, Enemies afflicting us Status effects is not fun, Its the Player that should be afflicting the enemies with Status afflictions.
 
Last edited:

Devildimos

I ruin memes for a living
Veteran
Joined
Jul 11, 2014
Messages
82
Reaction score
170
First Language
Eglish
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
When it comes to enemy balancing it is probably best to do a test run and feel the results.
If you find it to hard you modify that what feels too hard. This way you will find the perfect balance to the creature. Plus you can add ideas to make the creature more natural and balanced to their nature.

At least that's how I would do it.
 

HumanNinjaToo

The Cheerful Pessimist
Veteran
Joined
Apr 18, 2013
Messages
1,126
Reaction score
522
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Also, playtesting, a lot of playtesting.
Well, I think Balance mainly depends on Damage Formula you use.
I agree with these two statements here ^^

I always like to work out the kinks in my base damage formula before I start messing with stats of either actors or enemies too much. Then I work on creating actor classes and match their stats with the role they are designed to be. Then I create similar pseudo classes for enemies and use those as a base. I prefer lower max levels when designing my own games, which probably helps my method, because I will create enough enemies to fulfill each class at each possible level. I start by playtesting those basic enemies against the actors 1v1, then party v party. I do this to make sure they are pretty much even in damage output with basic attacks and skills. Then I begin fine tuning the stats so that my enemy party is taking more damage from the player party but also dealing more damage to the player party, and this is mostly because the player party has access to way better skills in-game. Once I have my generic enemy party tuned how I think works best, then I will begin working the 'real' enemies for the game and adjust those enemy stats based on my test-enemy-party, tweaking the numbers a bit to fit my imagining of the particular enemy. Then I go through and begin messing with traits. Then I will begin adding skills for the enemies and adjust the AI. The AI part is probably the most difficult for me though.

My way is probably not the most efficient in terms of time spent, but it works for me. I feel as though I get the enemies behaving the way I want and the encounters usually fit into the time slot I've given them. I prefer to keep encounters to around 30~90 seconds if possible.
 

Kupotepo

Fantasy realist
Veteran
Joined
Jul 5, 2017
Messages
1,529
Reaction score
1,410
First Language
Thai
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I test the enemy out. Plus you have LTBS which is really sophisticated for my mind to imagine.
I usually just multiple attacks of actions and how many turns I want the enemy to lose to get hp of that enemy.

And divide to a total of enemies if you have multiple enemies. The enemy is going to off a little stronger or weaker because of the magic and skills. So it is an easy game lol.

Do not worry your system is genuine and surprise us every time.

I show you the formula just in case you do not understand what I am saying:

Total actor.attack × defeat enemey's turns = enemy.hp / total enemy = total hp of enemy

Don't forget to equip actors with the equipment you expect they will get.
 
Last edited:

Frostorm

[]D[][]V[][]D aka "Staf00"
Veteran
Joined
Feb 22, 2016
Messages
1,116
Reaction score
809
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Yea, the damage formula is going to have a large impact, if not having the most effect on how stats should be distributed. "Normal" attack in my game uses (a.atk + a.atk + a.agi) / 3 for the damage side. For the damage mitigation side, I use value *= (100 + target.level) / (100 + armor), where "armor" is either b.def, b.mdf, or (b.def + b.def) / 2 depending on the nature of the attack.

As you can see, Strength (ATK) is worth twice as much as Dexterity (AGI) in terms of raw damage, but DEX grants a couple of secondary bonuses, such as Hit, Crit, & Counter. You'll also notice I'm using armor scaling for damage mitigation, so each point of DEF/MDF will be very impactful initially, but less so as you stack more and more of it. It's also one of the few places that use target.level. I added this to Yanfly's default formula to help flatten it out since it was too skewed without it. I mostly had the players in mind when designing that part, then realized I had to give enemies levels in order for the formula to work.

Using the above Goblins example, we can calculate:
  • the Goblin Warrior takes...
    • 91.67% physical damage
    • 98.21% magical damage
  • the Goblin Shaman takes...
    • 94.83% physical damage
    • 93.22% magical damage
All in all, everything "feels" pretty balanced, at least so far in early game. I haven't gotten around to creating mid to end game enemies yet. Fighting a 2v1 situation is actually kinda hard! If I don't position myself wisely, I might lose, though it's a very close call (I didn't use anything besides normal attack though). The player will win a 1v1 encounter for sure, even if the enemy is allowed to attack their backside every turn. Of course, actual gameplay will feature a party size of 3, and enemy troops could have 3-6 units.
 
Last edited:

Vergel_Nikolai

Veteran
Veteran
Joined
Mar 6, 2020
Messages
38
Reaction score
7
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
Enemy balancing. Dang where do I begin with this?

Let's say I am not the best in making enemies balanced. I can either end up making them too OP or too UP, and most of the time I take the blame on how the player characters are OP/UP instead. When making stats I usually type them in multiples of 5 and 10 because I kinda like numbers be like that. The most difficult part of balancing my enemy is how I lay-out my game: the player gets the freedom to choose three main missions that he want to do first. I am afraid that if he goes to one of the missions first and then move on to the next, the enemies in that mission will become too easy. In the other hand, if they go to a certain mission then it might be too hard for them. And I don't have the Yanfly Plugin for enemies to level up so I compensate the possible difficulty by dropping potions chests all across the map as well as giving the player an option to buy the Tier 2 gear in their home town if they can afford it.

So yeah I am in a balancing dilemma in my end. So far I only made one of the 3 missions and it's currently under construction. When I tested it out in my second balance tweak though it seemed like it's difficult to progress until you finally recruit the party member you meet in that area. And I suppose it'll be a more easier starting trek if you hired the healer party member that is in the other mission (aka the mission I'm going to make after this one).
 

Frostorm

[]D[][]V[][]D aka "Staf00"
Veteran
Joined
Feb 22, 2016
Messages
1,116
Reaction score
809
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
@Vergel_Nikolai Are your players able to see the enemy's stats in your game? If not, I don't really see the point of forcing your stats to have multiples of 5 or 10. That's just limiting your ability to fine-tune things. If you're having trouble balancing enemies in those 3 missions, you have a couple of options:
  • Make the enemies in all 3 missions the same level/difficulty.
  • Make it so the missions have to be done in a certain order (lazy method lol).
  • Make it so whichever mission the player chooses 1st, the enemies in that mission would be weakest, the next mission they choose will be a bit stronger, and the 3rd mission they choose will be stronger still. That way, no matter what order they do the missions, the difficulty will remain consistent/linear.
 
Last edited:

bgillisp

Global Moderators
Global Mod
Joined
Jul 2, 2014
Messages
13,225
Reaction score
13,777
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMVXA
What I did was I set up an excel sheet with the stats of an average character at that level, and a field where I can input what weapon/armor they should have by then, and it returns what the stats would be of an average party member at that point. Then I base enemy stats around that. If I want them fast I give them more AGI than the party average, if I want them slow I make them lower than the average. ATK/MAT is kept near the party average and so on.

Then I test this, and adjust as needed.
 

woootbm

Super Sand Legend
Veteran
Joined
Apr 26, 2014
Messages
217
Reaction score
146
First Language
English
Primarily Uses
RMMV
There's not really much to intellectualize with enemy stats. It just boils down to number of turns it takes to kill them, and number of turns it takes to kill you. Just playtest and adjust until it feels right.

Although some people are concerned about the presentation of damage numbers. Like choosing fonts, sfx and animations, there is some thought about how many digits worth of damage you have on screen. 5 digits and above starts to get too large to process for the average human brain, and nobody wants to see decimal places. Some folks will carefully tune their numbers so the player sees their growth on more clear terms. IE when they grow from dealing two digits worth of damage to three, and then four. Four digits (and above) is such a wide range that you can have a game where the player spends their entire time in there. And that doesn't feel like growth, even if you go from 1000's to 9000's.

Anyway, a much bigger concern for balancing enemies is what skills and compositions you give them. I can't believe how many RPG Maker games throw these enemies at the player with all kinds of chain stunning potential. I put one or two enemies who can stun in Oni, but I made sure to keep a tight lid on just how much they could stun the player.
 

ScorchedGround

Blizzards most disappointed fan
Veteran
Joined
Apr 12, 2020
Messages
204
Reaction score
317
First Language
German
Primarily Uses
RMMV
5 digits and above starts to get too large to process for the average human brain, and nobody wants to see decimal places.
Yeah have to agree with that one. It certainly feels good to have big numbers pop up, but you just cannot strategize or calculate with these numbers. So numbers of that magnitude should be reserved for hack-and-slay type games.
In my game the highest damage you'll do is about 30.000 with a critical on lvl 100 with a skill that boosts critical damage.

Anyway, a much bigger concern for balancing enemies is what skills and compositions you give them. I can't believe how many RPG Maker games throw these enemies at the player with all kinds of chain stunning potential. I put one or two enemies who can stun in Oni, but I made sure to keep a tight lid on just how much they could stun the player.
This is very true, especially for regular enemies that you fight over and over again. Giving them skills that stretch out the battle even further is pretty tedious. So most enemies should only have minor debilitating skills that don't cost you your actions. And then you have one or two fragile enemies that can actually stun you, but can be dealt with if you focus them down.
 

duty

Keepin' it simple
Veteran
Joined
Mar 13, 2012
Messages
53
Reaction score
50
First Language
English (US)
Primarily Uses
RMMV
I have an average hero HP and average hero damage output per turn value assigned to each dungeon. This is based on the heroes available for use in the party, and the level I anticipate they'll be by the time they reach the dungeon.

I estimate how many small encounters the party will have on their way to the dungeon boss, and set the enemy damage output per turn so that the party can expect to lose 50%-20% of its overall HP if it fights for 2 turns during each small encounter on the way to the final dungeon encounter.

Small mob HP is set to absorb slightly more than the party's anticipated damage per turn. With a little luck (critical hits) or skill, the player may be able to optimize their party and consistently deal above average damage, completing the small encounter before the end of the first turn and taking no damage. The flip side is that a poorly configured party, and a run of bad luck (missed attacks) means the enemy may get more than one opportunity to deal damage.

The boss's attacks and behavior is structured so that it deals 100% of the anticipated party HP within 10 turns. It's maximum HP is set to absorb the anticipated party's per turn damage output for 10 turns.

Variations are then added on, such as:
A small mob encounter that is completable within 2-3 turns, but only if the party takes advantage of an elemental weakness.
Mobs with less HP that add damage over time with their attacks, or cause a party member to lose a turn.

Mobs that heal other mobs, prolonging the encounter if they're not defeated first.

Etc.
 

Users Who Are Viewing This Thread (Users: 0, Guests: 1)

Latest Threads

Latest Posts

Latest Profile Posts

And back. Trying to work online with no internet for 1.5 days was...interesting. I felt like a character in a old Sierra game trying to find internet due to all the hoops I had to jump through just to get online for work.
grief... if MV didn't have certain plugins already, I think I'd upgrade to MZ. seeing like 10 MV plugins in 1 MZ one is hilariously convenient lol.
Have you already checkes out my mapping tutorial on the blog? I would love to hear your feedback and things you'd like to see in the future!

one of character for my upcoming game idk how to design o_O

Designing patches that can 'augmented' to clothing based armor. Such good fun. A bit time consuming due to the need to create image displays, but the patches are limited so it's not too tiring.
Note: lol, posting this made me find a couple mistakes.

Forum statistics

Threads
100,737
Messages
978,947
Members
132,359
Latest member
PhilKeepItReal
Top