Using low values for stats (HP, MP, ATTACK, DEFENSE,...)

jjleroy

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Hey guys, I want to balance my classes' and enemies' stats but the standard stats are far too high for my taste.

So I'd rather have them ranging from like

HP: 62 (Lv1) -> 588 (Lv99)
ATTACK: 2 (Lv1) -> 73 (Lv99)
DEFENSE: 4 (Lv1) -> 81 (Lv99)

Would it blow up the battle system if I used such low numbers for stats?
 

Wavelength

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You can work with any numbers, but at really low numbers like 2 and 4, a difference of 1 point in any stat can make a huge change in how much effective damage you're doing. For example, with the default formula for most skills of 4 * atk - 2 * def, at level 1 this would deal (4 * 2) - (2 * 4) = 0 damage, but even a jump of 1 point of ATK would raise the damage dealt to 4.

If you're going to use this kind of formula (rather than a percentage reduction of damage based on DEF), then I recommend starting at (or at least near) 10 or higher for each stat. That way you can represent an increase of power with a couple of points in a stat, without throwing off the balance of the whole thing early on.
 

Aoi Ninami

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Another thing to consider: the cap does not have to be 99. Your 2 -> 73 ATK (or 10 -> 73 with Wavelength's amendment) would mean that at some level-ups, no ATK was gained at all. That isn't necessarily a deal-breaker, just something to be aware of.

In my project, I have the following stats for my main character, Erika:

HP: 32 (Lv1) -> 816 (Lv99) (+8 per level)
MP: 32 (Lv1) -> 424 (Lv99) (+4 per level)
ATK: 12 (Lv1) -> 208 (Lv99) (+2 per level)
DEF: 10 (Lv1) -> 206 (Lv99) (+2 per level)

However, those are just the numbers in the database; I have no random encounters, so there's no infinite grinding and it's not actually possible to reach Level 99. (I have no idea what the actual maximum will end up being, as I've only built the first dungeon so far. I'll allow the maximum level to be whatever is the total EXP it's possible to gain throughout the game, rather than aiming for a specific figure.)

EDIT: I just noticed that with my EXP curve, which uses the parameters [20, 0, 26, 17], the total EXP to reach Level 33 is exactly 99,998. Now there's a good stopping point!

My damage formula is (2 * ATK * ATK) / (ATK + enemyDEF).
 

Golden Fish Entertainment

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We've actually thought about using D&D type stat growth for a future "mini project"; have you considered looking at something like that? The stats would stay almost static for the entire game (unless you equip specific gear), so HP and armor/weapons would be the primary means of character growth to keep up with stronger enemies.
 

jjleroy

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You can work with any numbers, but at really low numbers like 2 and 4, a difference of 1 point in any stat can make a huge change in how much effective damage you're doing. For example, with the default formula for most skills of 4 * atk - 2 * def, at level 1 this would deal (4 * 2) - (2 * 4) = 0 damage, but even a jump of 1 point of ATK would raise the damage dealt to 4.

If you're going to use this kind of formula (rather than a percentage reduction of damage based on DEF), then I recommend starting at (or at least near) 10 or higher for each stat. That way you can represent an increase of power with a couple of points in a stat, without throwing off the balance of the whole thing early on.
Aha, thank you so much for your reply, that makes sense. Could you give me an example of a formula which would use the percentage of DEF?
 

Wavelength

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Aha, thank you so much for your reply, that makes sense. Could you give me an example of a formula which would use the percentage of DEF?
a.atk * 50 / (b.def + 10)

You can change the 50 to any number appropriate based on the amount of power you want the skill to have. At 10 DEF, you are (always) reducing damage by half as compared to 0 DEF with this formula. At 20 DEF, you reduce it by two-thirds; at 30 DEF, three-quarters, and so on.
 

gstv87

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Could you give me an example of a formula which would use the percentage of DEF?
my advice would be to change the way the skills are calculated at the point of action, to always include attack, defense, or whatever you want, relative to the actors, and not provide those values through damage formulas.
you'd only provide the skill's own damage value in the damage formula, and all the calculation would be done by the battle system, not the skill objects.
that would potentially evidence any imbalance in the actor's stats, because if a skill's power and the calculation formula are both correct, then the greater the difference between the attacker's ATK and the defender's DEF from the database stats, the more total damage it'll come out of that process.
set the formula to the lowest possible outcome, set the skills to 1 power, and adjust the balance through the actors'stats.
once you have your flavor and color, then vary that by varying the skill power.

sometimes, working with low stat values can yield results of 0 damage, because some calculations divide small integers by percentages, and those percentages turn out as decimal fractions, which are rounded to 0.
shifting all those calculations to one unified operation, should help you calibrate the lowest threshold.
 

Engr. Adiktuzmiko

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Another thing to consider based on my experience is that when you're dealing with such low numbers testing and appreciating the effects of percent modifier becomes harder..

my advice would be to change the way the skills are calculated at the point of action, to always include attack, defense, or whatever you want, relative to the actors, and not provide those values through damage formulas.
This is like how I do it on my game, I have 2 damage formulas (one for physical and one dor magical) in my script and skills just call one of these two damage formulas while supplying the base damage of the skill.. These formulas then apply adjustments based on the attack and defense factors I've set (physical uses atk and def, magical uses mat and mdf). I still allow my skills to modify the value of the factors, but for most skills I just set them to my default value.

This way, I can also easily edit the way the actual damage formula works for all skills that use it via modifying just 1 damage formula.
 

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